part one: given way
Disclaimer: I own nothing. J.K. Rowling owns Harry Potter.
A/N: This is a Wishlist fic from a prompt provided by moondansr.
A/N2: Reviews are Good. This has been a subtle hint from the author - Please return to your regularly scheduled reading
Spoilers:Spoilers: Hmmm, I suppose up to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
Luna slides out from under the covers fully dressed, quietly pulls on her only shoes not “missing” at the moment and grabs her heaviest cloak. Out of habit, she tiptoes her way silently past the fully made beds of her classmates (for they are all home for the holidays) and pushes open the door. She makes her way down the girl dormitory stairwell, and navigates the completely dark Ravenclaw Common room with the ease of experience.
In the main hallways she feels the bite of cold that always penetrates the hard stone castle and her fingers curl, wishing for gloves (but, sadly, have been flitted away by “nargles” - the mean-spirited things
). Or truly, the head to toe winter gear that Father and her would always be decked out in when tracking creatures in more northern climes.
She misses him dearly, feels it as if in a wave, and hugs herself tight under her cloak for a moment as she lets it crash over her before settling again. But he had come across an opportunity to do more reporting on the heliopath controversy and the people at the reserve in Indonesia had seemed displeased at the idea of her coming along like she had always done on expeditions the past. Concerns about accountability, if she (a mere twelve year old school girl) were to be harmed by such volatile creatures, had come up and started to muddy that waters of what had initially been a jovial working relationship. So, instead of pushing and insisting that she knew what she was doing – that she knew far more than many ever gave her credit for; that finding and protecting rare beings was her life, that she had been working at her parent’s knees in research and journalism for her entire existence
– Luna simply told her Father to go on without her.
That she would be alright spending Christmas at Hogwarts alone.
(Had to push him quite a bit in fact, for they were close and hated to spend so much time apart. And the holidays were so wonderful – full of classical traditions and one’s that she had later found were only Lovegood.)
She glides past Mrs. Norris, who doesn’t make a sound as Luna walks by – only tilts her head to accept the obligatory scratch behind the ears and continues to watch her as she continues down the stairs. They have grown accustomed to each other over Luna's time here and their sometimes shared midnight wanderings – and even a grumpy cat isn’t immune to affection (and sometimes bits of leftover raw meat from when she feeds the Thestrals
With less students about the Dementors no longer seem to see the pointing of testing the waters and venturing close to the school, pulling at happiness bit by bit. And after a pause by the door in the entrance hall, to asses how she feels (to see if she can sense that heaviness in her chest or if horrible memories wish to drown her in sadness
) Luna pulls it open just enough to slip outside.
And it is much much
colder without the protective walls to guard form the elements and Luna pulls up her hood quickly. Even though there is less wind than during the earlier storm that howled during dinner (causing odd glances – glares and almost guilty looks – to be exchanged amongst two of the Professors that stayed in the castle during the holidays
), the fruits of it are evident in the mounds of snow. Snow which, is even covered in a bit of ice from the drop in temperature after the sun took a sleeping draught.
Still she makes her way on – being careful not careful not to slip. Across the snow, lit by the torches that stay ablaze in many of the ramparts every night in the castle, she gets to the very edge of her destination in utter silence.
Then, shivering a bit, pulling her cloak tighter around her, and taking a deep breath, Luna takes her first step onto the ice of the Lake. And after that one testing step, she feels a lift in her confidence, as if she is as sure footed unicorn – and it is then as simple as one foot in front of the other. She has been walking for a ways – her breath comes out in little puffs from the exertion, like smoke or steam from a cauldron – when she thinks she sees something.
Was that a bit of movement below the ice? Grinylows perhaps? Puzzled, she tries to brush some of the snow off with her shoe, then, when that is unsuccessful, kneels down and uses her sleeve instead. But soon Luna realizes it is still nearly impossible to see any significant depth - especially in this light (and with her wand, far away, back in her room). And so she resumes standing with a sigh (that escapes from her mouth in a satisfying cloud) and shiver.
She brushes snow off her sleeve absentmindedly, takes another step and then – then there is no longer ground beneath her feet.
No cracking of ice, no warning of any sort – just, suddenly she is falling. Only it doesn’t really feel as such, she doesn’t realize the ice has given way, doesn’t even recognize the sharp bite of cold so much worse than before, the drop in temperature so swift that takes the breath from her lungs.
Luna is only hit by sudden hard darkness that steals her consciousness.
And when she can see again, she sees him
“Oh,” she breathes an inhalation of surprise and delight that is completely mental. “Hello, there.”