part five: goodbyes
Part 5: goodbyes
Cedric's death is a shock. Having Harry appear over his body - there is never a moment of doubt once they see, that there is no longer life in him; he is too still.
So very still as Harry screams and then Cedric's own Father's cries take up the mourning call. (Her Daddy had screamed when he found her over Mommy's corpse, trying to shake her awake. So still.)
(Had Wesley yelled - in anger, in pain - when he realised she was gone?)
Luna is frozen in place - overwhelmed by horror, by twin memories. And it is Gabrielle, crying - looking for a familiar face who finds her - and grabs her, pulling her to the infirmary to stay and wait with her while her sister heals.
And it is for the best, because none of them want to be alone right then.
The day the other schools leave the Hall is a mass of bodies; everyone hugging, talking, laughing, and making promises to write. (Everyone grabbing tighter, talking louder to cover up nervousness over Dumlbledore announcing Voldermort being back and whispers of coming War
Gabrielle begs her to come visit and has to be practically dragged away by a smiling Fluer - who gives her a quick kiss on the cheek goodbye before they go.
Almost before she can blink Victor has replaced the two Veelas have in front of her. He just stares at her and Luna is still under his gaze - she has never been intimidated by him and has never been the nervous sort.
It is Victor who blinks first, a wide unexpected smile splitting his serious face. "I vould like to write you, Luna," he states.
"I think I'd like that," Luna says tilting her head as awe fills her. "I don't have many friends at Hogwarts," (a gentle supportive warmth like an internal hug and makes her smile), "it would be nice to have friends in other schools."
"I am vour friend," Victor says with a nod and an utter seriousness that is simply deeply touching to both Luna and Fred. Then he firmly reaches for her shoulders and pulls her into a hug. "And I vill alvays
be vour friend."
His hug isn't anything like Gabrielle's at all - he is much bigger than her and everything about him is hard unrelenting muscle. But Luna thinks she might quickly get used to this feeling of being so tiny. (Fred laughs loudly in her head
And she is still laughing as she leaves. Luna is back to being alone in her mind before either of them register something has changed.
It feels like a good sort of goodbye.
She is no longer within the exceptionally accepting blonde teenaged witch and Fred expects nothingness next. But instead she is back in her body.
Not alive again. No, Illyria is still there but she is imitating Fred's likeness - as another's final wish. And in doing so somehow called back Fred herself.
Inside Illyria is surprised by the other consciousness now dually inhabiting her shell but there is no time for such things and anyway Fred is aligned with her in what she must do. Together they look down at their injured Wesley, together they hold his body as he dies (just as he once did for her.)
They tell him what he wants to hear in these final moments.
And they are not lies.
As he stills Fred stays were she is while Illyria lays his body down - she want Illyria to know something before she leaves too.
Because Fred does not blame Illyria, she has healed and learned acceptance (or at least something like it) during these weeks sharing a body with Luna. She blames the people who set this all in motion, she blames Knox who chose her to be the host of a God-King - thinking she was worthy in some twisted way while knowing what it would do to her. Her last act is to gift Illyria the body. Freely giving her the form which she took without thought, without thinking it was wrong or understanding the human emotion linked the her death that it would evoke.
Illyria doesn' say thank you - it isn't her way - but she links both Fred and Wesley to the role of Qwa'ha Xahn and their will be much violence done today in their names.
Fred floats free and reaches skyward, released at last from physical form, speeding up to catch Wesley and go together
wherever they end up next.