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Luna Lovegood and the Shaggy Dog

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This story is No. 17 in the series "Waifs and strays". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: The sequel to Luna Lovegood and the Dark Portrait

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Harry Potter > Other BtVS/AtS Characters(Current Donor)vidiconFR1529124,4703338566,54411 Oct 1125 Jun 14No

Twins and Peers

Author’s Note:

I apologize for the lack of an update last week. The run up to Christmas was rather more hectic than expected.

This is the direct sequel to Luna Lovegood and the Dark Portrait

Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, J.K. Rowling and Joss Whedon do.

Thanks very much to my Betas , Letomo and EllandrahSylver, but all mistakes are still mine.

The following ways of notation may be found in this story. This is excluding whatever I need to represent chatting, texting and stuff like that. And you can thank Twilightwanderer for the Abbott and Costello.

Speech: “Who’s on first.”

Thought: *What’s on second.*

Vision: #I-don’t-know’s on third.#

Many thanks to my four new recommenders: LiastraLee, Panaka, Salric and   Shadowman. I greatly appreciate it.

I’d also like to thank everyone who reviews, as I have written before, reviews and questions are very inspirational.

Chapter 11 Twins and Peers  

The owls flew in, the morning post arriving. Several of the older students, and Hermione as well, subscribed to the Daily Prophet, if for no other reason than to know who was supposedly dating who. The owls circled for a bit and then each settled some place near to the addressee of their message. Papers rustled. And then pandemonium broke loose.

The front page was taken up entirely by a letter, and a list of names, and numerous headlines. 

LETTER TO THE MINISTER! DEMENTORS DENOUNCED! MALFOY-WEASLEY ALLIANCE!

THE MINISTER COULD NOT CONTROL A GARDEN GNOME, FIONA ABBOTT STATES!

WE WILL PROTECT OUR CHILDREN!! MOLLY WEASLEY AND NARCISSA MALFOY STAND TOGETHER!

UPROAR IN THE WIZENGAMOT!

“SILENCE!” A huge voice boomed. There was a startled hoot from an owl and then there was indeed, silence.

“Thank you, Professor Hagrid,” Dumbledore smiled, looking at the gobsmacked pupils. “I understand this is a great surprise. I must admit I myself was rather amazed at the... ah... alliance of disparate views. It seems that a great many of your parents have taken the view that the risk posed by the Dementors to you, their children, is greater than they are willing to tolerate. Now, I am certain that all of you will be receiving letters, but this afternoon I will be speaking to Lord and Lady Malfoy, Mr. Arthur Weasley and Lady Molly Weasley and...” He blinked and pursed his lips. Then he leaned over and showed the piece of paper to Snape who blinked, then frowned and whispered something. Dumbledore nodded thoughtfully. “Both Drs. Granger, as well as Dr. Xenophilius Lovegood. No doubt they will be able to clarify the situation and I will relay such things as are appropriate either at dinner or breakfast tomorrow. Now I realize the all of you are very excited, but I must ask you to keep your voices down a little. Some decorum must be shown, after all. Tuck in!”

Harry, Hermione and Ron exchanged looks, and then Hermione opened the newspaper and started reading while Ron started eating and Harry remembered the look on Lucius Malfoy's face as he sat and read by his son's bed.

“Harry! Ron!” Hermione called out, while running after the two boys. “They're here!”

“Right. Come on Harry, let’s go find out what sort of spell the Malfoys put on my parents,” Ron stated emphatically.

“Ron, I really don't think it is a spell. I think it may be an alliance of convenience. But not a spell,” Hermione asserted.

“How can you be so sure?” Ron demanded.

“Because there's nothing in there about Purebloods, or Muggleborns,” Harry pointed out.

“Normal-borns,” a dreamy voice from behind her corrected.

“Oh, hello Luna. Sorry, you are right. Ummm... what is your dad a Doctor of?” Harry asked.

“Arithmancy,” Luna replied softly. “Maman was a Doctor of Charms.”

“Right. Erm... He doesn't act like a doctor, much,” Ron pointed out.

“How should they act, Ron? Professor Snape is one, and Professor Dumbledore.  They are quite different,” Luna replied quizzically.

Ron opened his mouth and then closed it. “Wait, Snape is a Master of Potions? Not just the Potions Master?”

“Professor Snape, Ron,” Hermione corrected primly. “And yes, he is a Master of Potions, it says so in Hogwarts, a history. I looked it up after Luna said her father told her he was so good at potions.”

Harry raised a hand in question. “Err... What's the difference?”

“Well, the one could be done by anyone who had finished his apprenticeship, a journeyman. And the other is, well, like a University professor, but much rarer,” Hermione explained.

“But this isn't a university,” Harry pointed out. “What is he doing here then?”

“Teaching. At least, that is what I would be doing if all my pupils were inside the classroom. Fifteen points from Gryffindor, Mr. Potter. Miss Lovegood, don't you have a class to be in?” Snape loomed up behind them and Ron nearly swallowed his tongue in fright at his silky, menacing tones.

Luna nodded vaguely. “Charms. I shall go and see if anything interesting is going on there.” She wandered off, skipping and humming.

Snape glared at the three Gryffindors. “Is there a reason you are still not in my classroom?” he almost whispered, leaning forward slightly, his lanky hair falling around his face.

Hermione shook her head and hurried down the hall, making certain she was not running. Harry and Ron scurried after her. Snape followed, robes billowing.

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Albus Dumbledore beamed a smile at his arriving guests. “Lady Molly, Mr. Weasley. Lord and Lady Malfoy. Dr. and Dr. Granger, Dr. Lovegood, welcome.”

“Professor Dumbledore,” Molly rather coldly replied. Arthur nodded stiffly.

Dumbledore blinked at the cold greeting. “Well, err, shall we take a seat?” He gestured at the comfortably upholstered chairs and everybody sat.

“I assume this is about the Dementors?” He smiled reassuringly at Molly, who glared back.

“No, we will support you, like we said at the Wizengamot. This is about school matters.” Lucius handed over a heavily sealed envelope. “This is a letter fully endorsing us to speak for the Hogwarts Board of Governors.”

Dumbledore blinked and then looked at Arthur, who nodded solemnly. “I was there; it is all perfectly in order.”

Dumbledore opened the heavy linen envelope and read the short letter, sensing the magic in the seals and signatures. “This all seems to be in order.” He looked up from his reading. “So what is this about?”

“The education of our children,” Narcissa said quietly. “A new curriculum.”

Dumbledore eyed the group, wondering what was going on, what plans lay underneath the odd request. Molly reached into her voluminous handbag and pulled out a piece of paper and handed it over.

Dumbledore blinked. The letter was short and consisted primarily of subjects, some with question marks, some with names to them. It had been written by at least three, possibly four different people, and he had seen the writing often enough while he was still teaching, to realise who had written it. “Mrs. Tonks helped write this? Why isn't she here?”

Lady Andromeda Tonks currently hasn't got a child in Hogwarts,” Narcissa coldly informed the Headmaster. Her eyes, never the warmest in the Wizarding world, were like chips of blue ice.

Dumbledore shivered, though his size and robes concealed the fact. “I see. Well, these are certainly quite sweeping changes. I am not opposed to them, but I do want to point out that on the current staff budget I cannot condone them. We simply lack the funds.”

“The Board of Governors realizes that. However, with the Board and the Headmaster and hopefully the faculty in agreement about necessary changes to the curriculum, we should be able to campaign for an increased endowment,” Lucius remarked.    

“That is indeed true. The School’s Charter, however, must remain inviolate,” Dumbledore argued. “And I will want assurances before I join any campaign. Written assurances.”

“I think the Board will agree to that quite easily, Headmaster,” Arthur smiled. “After all, we do want what is best for Hogwarts.”

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Ron was staring morosely at his plate. All morning, every class, there had been an undercurrent of tension as the Hogwarts pupils wondered what exactly was happening and what was going to happen. The Weasleys, Luna and Draco had been the primary targets for attempts at information gathering. All had remained silent, except for Luna who happily informed her listeners that it was obvious that the Humongous Gazongas, famed for bringing men together in mutual admiration, had worked their miracle.

It took all of Harry and Hermione’s willpower not to start laughing really loud at hearing that theory.

Suddenly Harry sobered. “She’s having us on.”

“What? Who?” Hermione asked, confused.

“Luna. I know she knows what err… You-know-what’s are.”

“How?”

“Because I told her!” Harry exclaimed softly. “She showed me the Quibbler and I, well, I explained and then she just smiled and said ‘Well, maybe Daddy will be happy when he finds them then.’”

“Oh. I see. Hmmm. Oh.” Hermione’s gaze went off into the middle distance. “She’s worried about him.”

“What?”

“Harry, when Luna was in the Infirmary… You didn’t see Mr. Lovegood. I think that if Luna died, he wouldn’t last a week. So she hopes he will meet someone, even if it is on a search for… err… big breasts.” Hermione blushed.

Harry let out a near hysterical giggle. “How do you think Luna would react to getting a page three girl as a stepmother?”

Hermione lost it, collapsing in helpless laughter. Ron glanced up from his plate. “What’s so funny?” He demanded to know.

“You-know-what’s,” Hermione managed to stammer.

“What are those? Something to do with You-Know-Who?” Ron asked in confusion.

Hermione giggled. “Ah, so you think You-Know-Who has You-Know-What’s?”   

This set both Harry and Hermione off into gales of mirth.

Ron just shook his head and wondered what was so funny.

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Luna climbed the stairs of the Astronomy tower, humming, skipping up the stairs. It was raining and the wind whipped around the castle and the Astronomy tower, the highest part of it, was the target of the heaviest squalls. Luna liked storms, liked looking at them, and today she hoped to catch the first flashes of lightning and the rolling thunder. 

She opened the great iron-banded wooden door that opened onto the highest floor and stepped out, taking a deep breath, smiling. The wind roared through the arches and whipped Luna’s long blonde hair sideways. Had it been a movie all of it would have swung behind her. As it was, half it flew across her face and as she was taking a deep breath, into her mouth. The spell that kept her chewing her ends sent it flying away, making her look like a lopsided dandelion. “Oh, Hedgehog!” Luna muttered. She carefully gathered her hair and twisted into a bun, then impaled the unwieldy mass with her wand, her face screwed up in concentration. And then she heard the crying. Luna knew that sort of crying, the sound of heart-rending terrified loneliness. She had cried that way often enough her first days at Hogwarts, when her dorm mates had taken her things, when the loneliness was closing in, when no one seemed to want to know her, except maybe as a target. *A Firstie with homesickness. I’ll go see if I can help.*

Draco Malfoy was curled into a ball, his legs drawn up and his face buried in his knees. The wind was whipping his hair, his face was blotched by tears, and gulping in great gasps of breath. He sat huddled in a cornice and looked up from his knees. “Go away, Lovegood.” His voice was choked by tears.

Luna tilted her head in a birdlike fashion, blinked and sat down by the blond boy. “I don’t think so. Maybe I can help.”

Draco hugged his knees more closely. “You can't help me, Lovegood. I don't know what's wrong.”

“Oh. Well, then let’s find out.”

Draco glared at her, saw her ‘I am Ravenclaw and I will find out’ as well as her ‘Luna really, really wants to know’ look and decided to give in as gracefully as he could. “Oh, very well,” he grumbled, begrudgingly.

Luna smiled. “Good. Now, when did it start?”

“After the Dementor attack. I-I keep feeling as if I'm missing something.”

“Missing what?” Luna inquired.

Draco scowled. “If I knew that, I wouldn't call it something! And I would probably know what was wrong.”

Luna nodded. “Of course. I'm sorry, it was a stupid question. Can you try and describe the feeling? Are you missing your hair? Or your socks?”

Draco looked at her delicate ankles, daintily crossed and clad in stripy socks, sighed and pressed his forehead against his knees. “Lonely. I feel lonely.”

Luna frowned. “Lonely. Hmm. How did you feel before? And when did it start? The loneliness, I mean.”

“Why do you want to know, Lovegood?” came the weary question.

“To try and help you, of course. Didn’t I say so before?” Luna replied, puzzled.

Draco scowled and then apparently decided that it was easier to give in. “It started after the Dementor attack. My parents... I think they cast a spell. But they would never hurt me,” Draco added defensively, as if trying to convince himself. “Never!”

“I am sure they would not. So you feel lonely now, but how did you feel before?”

“Confident. As if there was always someone who loved me and who would stand by me no matter what.”

Luna blinked, very slowly, three times. “Come with me.”

“What?”

“Come with me, please, we need to ask some people questions,” Luna eyed the blond haired boy and then pulled out a large polka dotted handkerchief that would have made Dumbledore nod in approval. “Wipe your eyes and have a good blow first.”

Draco laughed, taking in the purple, yellow and bright green spots. “You sound like my mother.” He accepted the handkerchief and did as Luna told him, then tucked it away. “I'll have it returned to you once it is laundered.”

Luna nodded. “That'll be fine. Come on.”

“Where are we going?” Draco asked sullenly.

“Gryffindor Tower,” came the cheerful reply.

Draco stopped, stock-still. “What? Are you trying to get me killed?”

“No. And they are confused enough that I doubt they will. Your parents and Mr. and Mrs. Weasley showing up together, and that letter, well I don't think anyone knows who to bully now. Quite good really.”

Draco rolled his eyes. “I see. Well, no doubt my mother will have words with you if you prove to be wrong. What are we going to do in Gryffindor Tower?”

“Talk to the Weasley twins. Tell them about what you feel.” Luna stated as she dragged Draco along by his sleeve.

“The Weasley Twins? You want me to tell my amorphous, uncertain feeling of loneliness to the Weasley Twins?” Draco asked incredulously.

“Yes,” Luna replied imperturbably, as if it was the most normal thing in the world. “No dawdling!”

Draco was too stunned to object and allowed himself to be led, but his silent acquiescence was questioning, slightly fearful and uncertain.

Luna knocked on the frame of Sir Cadogan's painting. “Begone, foul Harpy! Do not defile this fair corridor with your presence!” The pudgy knight waved his sword.

The Grey Lady floated out of the wall and raised an eyebrow. The rosy cheeks of the knight paled. He crashed to his knees, offering his sword to Luna and Draco. “Forgive me, Worthies; pray tell me how I may atone for my grievous insult.”

Luna blinked at the painting. “Could you please let Fred and George Weasley know that we would like to talk to them?”

Sir Cadogan swept his sword up in the ancient salute and then disappeared from his frame.

Luna looked at the Grey Lady. “My Lady? Would you stay and stop them from hexing Draco? The twins I mean.”

The Lady looked pensive, and then nodded, silent as ever.

The Twins clattered down the stairs and opened the frame. They looked warily at Draco, who nodded, equally warily.

Luna smiled. “Good, let's go to Calder’s Nook.” She led three older boys away. When she came to the cosy old window seat she sat down, cross-legged, showing her colourful stockings and smiled at Fred and George.

“Fred, George, when Ginny and I were very young we asked you some questions about what it was like to be twins. Could you tell Draco?”

Fred and George blinked at the unusual request. “Will you tell us why?”

“Yes, but only later, after he has heard you,” Luna replied.

Fred and George exchanged looks. “Not enough.”

Draco scowled. “I'm not going to-”

One of the twins shook his head. “We don't want anything from you, Malfoy.”

“We want to know how Luna can tell us apart,” the other continued.

Luna blinked. “You are Fred and you are George.” She pointed at each in turn. “You are you – you are Fred, not George, or Ron, or Harry or Draco. You are Fred. And you are George.” She pointed again.

Draco laughed. “I think, gentlemen, that this is all you will get out of her.”

George nodded. “It’s enough, I think. We can work from there.” He bit his lip. “It feels like there is always someone there for you, that you are never alone, that the other will always come and help you.”

Fred nodded in agreement. “Yeah, that's it.”

Draco blinked and then looked at Luna. “I never had a twin. I would have known.”

“We should ask your parents. They are all here, yours too, Fred and George,” Luna suggested.

“We know.”

“They're in the”

“Headmaster's office.”

“Right. Let’s go and see them.” Luna said brightly.

“Lovegood, we can't just barge in on a meeting with the Headmaster,” Draco pointed out.

“Never fear to tweak the nose of authority,” Luna replied absently, as she headed off

George and Fred grinned. “A wonderful girl,” George whispered.

“She understands the deep meaning of things,” Fred continued.

“We ought to marry her,” George concluded, as he followed the skipping blond.

Draco scowled at the twins' backs and then followed them. “Only over my dead body, you will,” he muttered darkly.

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“Sherbet lemon!” Luna tried. The Gargoyle remained silent. Mrs. Norris, Filch the caretaker’s cat, on silent paws approached and sat looking at the children, her yellow eyes showing amusement and disdain.

“Cockroach clusters!”

Mrs. Norris let out a noise that in a person would best be described as a snigger.

Luna huffed and glared at the gargoyle and then at the cat. “Ton-tongue-toffee!”

Mrs. Norris meowed softly and arched her neck and licked her back. Luna sighed. “A little help here? It really is important.” She mewled at the cat softly.

Draco, Fred and George exchanged looks. “She meows at cats. Are we still sure we want to marry her?” Fred asked his twin.

“Mum meows at cats. She also screams at gnomes,” George replied with aplomb. “We can surely ignore such a minor failing in her if we can ignore it in our mother.”

Draco very carefully did not say anything about his mother’s two Siamese cats. *I wonder if Luna would like a kitten from the next litter?*

“Salt-water Taffy!” Luna said defiantly, while looking pleadingly at the cat. The gargoyle remained silent and unmoving. Luna looked at the gargoyle. “Can you at least let the Headmaster know that we need to speak with him?”

The gargoyle eyed her in a most negative manner.

Luna eyed the gargoyle with a touch of puzzlement. “So you will not open, and you will not tell the Headmaster that we are here, because he is busy. And yet we have to see some of his guests,” her face lit up. “It's like one of those logic puzzles. Hmmm. Well, we all know that the Headmaster uses candy as passwords. There are a limited number of candies. So we may be here while, but we should eventually succeed.”

Draco winced. The Twins grinned.

Luna eyed the statue again and then the Twins, who were watching her with a certain amount of amusement and expectation. Mrs Norris meowed from her corner, and then hissed derisively.

“Still not very helpful, but thank you. Liquorice string.”

The cat made a spluttering noise and then meowed again.

Luna flushed slightly, and spluttered and meowed in return. Mrs. Norris meowed again, grudgingly. Luna nodded in thanks.

“Liquorice allsorts!” Luna announced. The Gargoyle swung open and all three boys gaped.

Draco gave the cat a suspicious look. “Did that cat give you the password?”

“Of course not, she’s a cat,” Luna answered airily. “She made me pay for it.”

Fred and George exchanged looks of disbelief. Draco looked thoughtful.

Luna waved the boys ahead of her and rather hesitantly they did. Luna inclined her head and meowed softly. The cat arched her back, hissed and ran away. “Oh, dormouse! Now what did I say?” Luna pouted and followed the boys up the stairs.

The door at the top was closed and two Weasleys and Draco looked beseechingly at Luna, who knocked, humming a little tune.

There was a moment of silence. “Come in!” The Headmaster called out, in a slightly curious voice.

Luna curtsied in the doorway. “Good afternoon, Headmaster, Lord Malfoy, Lady Malfoy, Dr. Granger, Dr.Granger, Mr. Weasley, Lady Margaret. Hullo, Daddy!” Luna walked into the office, noting that there were several blackboards, all slightly obfuscated to prevent her from reading them. Each of the adults held a small stack of parchment and a quill, or in the case of the Grangers, a notepad and biro.

“Hello my little Butterbeer cork. Are you alright?” Xenophilius greeted her cheerfully.

“Yes Daddy, I’m fine, but Draco isn't. He is missing something.” At Narcissa's gasp, Luna turned to him. “Draco? Why don't you come in?”

Draco, Fred and George rather sheepishly filed in. Molly glanced at her sons. “And why are you here?”

“Expert nutcases, I mean witnesses,” Luna said, blushing a little at her slip.

Arthur laughed. “Well said, my dear. Expert witnesses on what?”

“Being twins. Lady Malfoy, what spell did you cast on Draco after the Dementors?”

Arthur and Molly, as well as Xenophilius looked at the Malfoys, whose natural paleness was nothing compared to the blanched look they had now.

“What spell did you cast on your son, Lord Malfoy?” Dumbledore asked with an edge to his voice.

“Headmaster, you have no right to judge them, not after what you did, or neglected to do,” Molly Weasley interjected, gazing with compassion at Draco and then her sons.

Lucius took a deep breath. “Before we tell you, Draco, will you please tell us how you feel?”

Draco looked at all the adults.  Then at the Twins, who drew their wands and held them solemnly. Draco nodded. Then he took deep breath. “Lonely, very lonely, as if my best friend is gone, before... it always felt as if there was someone to catch me when I fell...”

Narcissa sobbed. “His name was Scorpius. He was your twin. He-he died before you both were born.”

Draco staggered and would have fallen if Fred and George had not caught him, both redheads looking aghast at the revelation.

Lucius rose. “We thought what we did was for the best, but obviously we did not consider all the ramifications. Draco, if you would come with us? Headmaster, may we borrow a room?”

“Yes, certainly, use my library.” Dumbledore waved a hand and a bookcase swung open. The Malfoys went in, Draco between his parents. Dumbledore looked after them, the customary twinkle gone from his eye. He eyed Molly uncertainly. “Could you clarify your earlier remark, Mrs. Weasley?”  

“I could, but I said too much already, I will leave that to Lord and Lady Malfoy. Suffice it to say I will never trust your word and insight without considerable corroboration again,” Molly said firmly. “Though I admit that I too, have been short-sighted, I have never been vindictive with it.”

Dumbledore nodded. “I will ask them.” He glanced at the Weasley twins, oddly subdued, standing very close together and holding each other’s hands desperately. “And I think forgiveness too.”

BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS BtVSBtVS

Draco looked at his parents sullenly. “So, what did you do?”

Lucius stiffened as Narcissa let out a small sob. “Draco, we did what we thought best. We... we took a memory, we did not just Pensieve it, we removed it and stored it. We thought it would end your nightmares.” Lucius offered. “We never intended to hurt you.”

Draco blinked. “But why would I have nightmares?”

Narcissa removed the crystal vial that held the memory with trembling fingers and then beckoned Draco over. She unstoppered the vial, took a deep breath and waved her wand from the bottle's neck to Draco's forehead. “Memoria Integra!” she whispered, her face pale and her eyes anguished.

Draco's eyes widened and he started to tremble. Narcissa opened her arms and Draco rushed into them, sobbing. Lucius stepped next to them and put an arm around Narcissa and a hand on Draco's shoulder.

Once Draco had cried out his grief Lucius spoke. “We're sorry, Draco. We thought...”

Draco smiled, tremulously. “I understand, Dad.” He shivered. “I understand very well. I'm sorry I doubted you.” He hugged both his parents and then backed off, straightening his robes and schooling his face. “I should go thank Lu- Lovegood.”

Narcissa raised an eyebrow. “Draco, there is no need to pretend.” She exchanged looks with her husband, who smirked. “She seems a very interesting girl,” then she sighed. “And she's quite high on your father's list apparently.”

“Top of the list, actually.” Lucius stated smugly. Narcissa rolled her eyes in exasperation.

Draco looked stunned. “What?”

Lucius scratched his nose. “After you spoke about her so glowingly, I did a little research. The Lovegoods are good, strong Yeoman wizard stock and she would make a good match as she is Xenophilius' only heir. But she will only be a Lovegood until she turns seventeen.  Then she will succeed her mother, as Luna Ceiswyr, Princesse Magique D'Albane.”

Draco flushed and gulped as he realized he might not have been so circumspect as he had hoped. “Oh,” his face became thoughtful. “She doesn’t act like Princess...” he ventured.

Narcissa laughed. “And how many girls do you know who curtsy when they enter a room and are always, always supremely confident? House D'Albane may be banished, but they are still of the Blood Royal, and they still have holdings across Europe, even if their wealth is much diminished.”

Draco’s shoulders slumped. “I should have made the connection when she showed us Argent.”

“Argent?”

“L'Orage d'Argent. The broom.”

It was Lucius turn to look stunned. “That is real?”

She is real. Quite a personality, too.” Draco smirked. “Argent likes me better than Potter.”

Narcissa coughed at her son’s smugness, hiding a laugh. “Well, then shall we rejoin the others?”

Draco nodded and followed his parents. Luna and her father were standing by a blackboard and Xeno was writing a set of equations. “...numbers of Crumple-horned Snorkacks in the Norwegian reservation, if we include the depredations of predators and the proximity of Aurora Borealis, should have increased at least a hundred fold. If they do like the cold, as we posited, they may have spread into Siberia and even up into Alaska and Canada if they travel as fast as we calculated.”

Luna looked down at her shoes, her face pensive. “I will need longer and thicker socks, stockings possibly. It’s cold in Siberia.”

Xeno beamed at her. “Oh, of course! Warm clothes. At least, the boots and socks, for the permafrost, and insect repellent spells.”

Draco went over to Luna and bowed, a courtly, old fashioned bow. “Thank you, Lady, for the aid you gave me.”

Luna blinked and then smiled. “You're welcome. You ought to thank Fred and George as well though.”

Draco looked as if he had just been told he had to kiss Trevor the Toad. George and Fred did not look much happier. Then Draco took a deep breath and bowed again.  “I thank you for your aid, Masters Weasley.”

Fred and George exchanged a look and then bowed in return, equally courtly. “It was our pleasure to help a fellow Twin, Lord Draco,” George replied.

Dumbledore beamed. “Well, that seems to have been settled. Unless Miss Lovegood has another other business?”

Luna looked thoughtful. “Not really, unless...”

The entire room, except for Xeno, who was writing on the blackboard again, held their collective breaths.

Luna looked down shyly. “Err... Could I have a Sherbet Lemon?”
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