I've given this fanfic a makeover – sort of like someone beta-reading it, but I did it myself. Anyway, this was inspired by "Comparison", by Kioko, which is not actually a Harry Potter fic, but a Dragonaball Z one. Read it anyway. It rules.

Disclaimer:

Don't own this computer,

Don't own this site,

Don't own Harry Potter,

Don't send lawyers – I'll fight.

Who I Am

By Blazingfirewolf

Loony. Loony Lovegood.

That was the first thing I was called, back in first year when I walked up to the sorting hat and talked out loud in front of the whole school, calmly as you please, "Mother said that you discriminate and were originally descended from the swamp elves, not Godric Gryffindor. Father would love to study you and find out more about the swamp elves' behaviour. I'd like to go in Ravenclaw, please." Then I carefully placed the hat on my head, where it was silent for a few seconds before calling out the name I had asked for.

People whispered, and I made out someone at the Gryffindor table saying, "She's loony, that one." I didn't take any notice, but from then on, I was treated with either scorn, pity or an odd mixture of both.

I didn't let it bother me. Even if I'd wanted to be different, how could I be something different than I was?

Time passed, and in my second year I'd met a first year on the train who'd seemed grateful for any sort of friendship, even one with me. We'd struck up a conversation, and by the end of the journey he was cheerfully agreeing to search for a Snoggle Rithbug with me. I was even happier than I was normally.

Two days later he was going out of his way to avoid me. I was confused, and asked a girl three years above, called Cho Chang, about it. "It's because you're a delinquent," she said matter-of-factly. "Mad. Odd. Loony." Not accepting that answer, I went to look for the boy myself, and found him with a whole group of other people his age.

When he saw me, a spark of panic came into his eyes. He glanced at the people around him, who were already jeering me and calling me "Loony Lovegood". Then he gave me a seemingly pleading glance, and started taunting me too.

I was confused. The boy hadn't seemed like that sort of person on the train, so why would he be like that now? I thought hard, but I didn't understand. How was it possible to be so completely different than you were before? You wouldn't be…you.

I wondered if there was something wrong with the boy, and then I wondered if there was something wrong with me. Did everyone change with others like the boy had? Should I too? Who was I, I wondered. Was I really loony? Was I a fanatical idiot, like a sixth year had told me? Professor Snape had said I had a mental instability where I created illusions to block out the pain in life. Granted, he said things like that to everyone, but maybe he was speaking the truth.

Who was I? And how could I be what everyone thought I was?

I went through the day in a daze, tripping over suits of armour and biting my fingernails obsessively. I didn't know, and that was the worst thing. I always had an answer; it was the one thing about myself I always relied on. But now things like Crumple Headed Snorsnacks and Vampire Pomeranians couldn't help me. Belief could only go so far.

That night while sitting on my bed with a textbook open on my lap, I instinctively raised my hand to touch the Butterbeer cork necklace. Suddenly my hand stilled, and my expression grew pained.

It all came down to how I presented myself, didn't it? I wouldn't have been so confused if I were different. If I were normal.

I carefully undid the necklace, and looked at it pensively. Then I gave a small, sad wave, thought, Bye Luna, and threw it away.

It arched through the air, and appeared to shimmer with magic Then it seemingly picked up speed, and hit the bookshelf with a bang, causing dust to fall. Slowly, I saw a piece of parchment floated to the ground, shimmering with the same sparkle that the necklace had. Curious, I walked forward, picked it up and turned it over. There were words on it, written with a very familiar handwriting.

For a few moments, I had absolutely no expression on my face. The words on the paper were running themselves over and over through my head, stopping anything else from entering.

Maybe…maybe I was wrong.

Then, ever so slowly, a smile started showing, and grew until it was encompassing my whole face. Suddenly I started shrieking with laughter, waking up my dorm mates and causing Professor Flitwick to come in and check if everything was alright.

I didn't care. I knew who I was.

So, you can keep taunting me, and hiding my things, and "accidentally" tripping me on the way to the great hall. You can whisper behind my back all you want, and pretend I did something I had no part in. You can even insult my father's magazine. Because, in the end, it doesn't mean anything. I know who I am

I am a dreamer. I am a Ravenclaw. I am surprisingly good at Quidditch. I'm brilliant at charms, and you won't find a better person to do something embarrassing for the sake of friendship. I believe in far-fetched magical beasts, and will sometimes laugh so hard that I fall over. My hair is straggledy and I do stick my wand behind my ear.

I know all this. It doesn't matter if you don't, because I do, and I honestly don't care what you think. There are some times… when I get lonely, and wonder whether it would be easier to just flow with the crowd. But then I remember how great it is to just be me, with absolutely no masks on. I honestly feel sorry for people who have to hide their personalities to fit in with what's expected of them.

And if ever I feel like I can't deal with things, I just go up to my room and pull out that piece of paper, the one that mysteriously appeared one night with a handwriting that looked exactly like my mother's. I don't wonder how it could have come to me when she has been dead for years. I believe, which is possibly the best gift anyone could ever have.

I hold the parchment in my hands, and look at the one sentence that is written there. Then I give a great grin, and run downstairs with my Butterbeer cork necklace on, trying to catch the elusive Snoggle Rithbug. Some Ravenclaws glare at me, but I just smile back at them in my absent, dotty way.

Because I know who I am, and no one can ever take that away from me. After all, if I wasn't me, what would I be?

You are Luna Lovegood.

Yes, mum. Yes I am.

--Finis--