Chapter 1 – The Movie
I wasn't always independent. My mother held my little finger and led me through the trials of life, never letting me go for even a second. She harnessed me and loved me in a way that I never had the chance to experience after her death. But this isn't the story of her life. This story is about me, Luna Lovegood, a girl that matured to become a completely different woman. I am ready to take you across the road, where there will be many stumbling and falling, but the walker will always get back on its feet.
As far as I know, I was born at St. Mungo's on February eighteenth at 9:21 PM. My father arrived after the room echoed with my feeble cries, but that was because he was striving through the streets of the Wizarding World, trying to find a plausible job to support his family. You could say that my father was an eccentric man. He did not put his pants on one leg at a time, nor did he eat Chinese food with chopsticks. While we didn't mind, others immediately took note of this peculiarity and considered it as a sign of incompetence. They shunned him. They didn't believe him. My mother tried her best to tolerate my father's struggle, and not once did she criticize him for the man he was. Now that was true love.
Of course, I didn't know anything about what was going on, because at that time I was too young to comprehend what they were saying. However, at about the age of four, I began to catch on bits of their conversations and countered Dad's frustrating face as he roamed about day and night. We were living on my Mum's temporary job at St. Mungo's, where she worked as a pillow fluffer. One of the sentences that I still haven't forgotten to this day came from Mum, when she said to Dad, "Do not be ashamed of yourself. We are who we are." I carried these words throughout my entire life and whenever someone frowned at me, I didn't take it personally most of the time.
One day, when I was five years old, everything changed. A job Daddy had applied to called him back and requested an interview with a representative. I saw my father jump with jubilant joy. He danced around the house like a maniac and then made his way to me, picking me up and kissing me on both cheeks. I laughed and cheered with him, for I had never seen my father this happy. A few minutes later, Mum came home and she received the same treatment from him as I had.
"Maria! Oh Maria! I got an interview! Can you believe it? Oh honey, I love you so much!" He trampled all over her as he tried to squish her tightly.
"Stop it, stop it! You're killing me David!"
"Oh sorry, sorry. I'm just happy."
Mommy's lips widened into a bright smile, "Yes! That's great! I'm so proud of you! I knew you could do it!"
"I know! And it's all thanks to you. If you hadn't supported me, then I don't know where I would be today."
Daddy rubbed Mommy's arm and went closer for a kiss. I made a nasty face, "Oh, Mommy, Daddy, stop it! That's disgusting!"
They both hooted with laughter and sat down on the couch.
"Where'd you get the interview?"
"The Quibbler?" Mommy repeated, "Are you sure you want to take that on, David?"
"Of course. Why wouldn't I?"
"Well…don't take this the wrong way, but don't you think that newspaper is a bit…bizarre?"
"No. How so?"
"Well, it prints out the strangest stories that I don't even think are true, and they can never back up their theories with evidence. I'm all for weirdness, but it has to have some truth behind it. I think it's all a sham."
"But that's the beauty of it," Daddy said with excitement, "I love their stories. There's no logic and it's just sheer fun. It's all what I am about, honey."
"Well, alright, if you really want this."
"I do." Daddy said, still grinning.
"Daddy, what's the Quibbler?" I asked, sitting on his lap.
"It's a paper that gives news everyday, you know, like the Daily Prophet. If they take me, then I'll get to write articles and games and all kinds of other things. Oh, I have to tell someone else about it. I can't keep it in. This is the best day ever!" Daddy practically hopped to the family room where the fireplace was and I heard him shout someone's house address. He was gone.
"Well, your Dad is certainly not a laid back person."
"Mommy, if Daddy goes to work everyday, then does it mean that I'll be home alone?"
"Oh no. Of course not. We'll have a baby sitter for you, and I'll be back in a couple of hours anyway. Don't worry about it."
"But I'll miss him."
"Hmm…you never said you'd miss me when I started working."
"That's because I knew you'd come back. What if Daddy falls in love with his work, marries it, and leaves us?" I said, totally panicked. Mum laughed.
"Oh, sweetie, he's not going to leave us! Not to mention that you can't marry an inanimate object."
"How do you know? You won't see him everyday. He'll be a whole new person." I challenged her.
"I know because he is my husband and I love him."
Despite what she said, I did not believe it.
It turned out that Daddy did get his job and, as expected, I was not happy about it. I still remember the first day he had to go. The way I clung to his leg and cried vociferously almost made him want to stay, but Mommy tore me apart from him and made him walk out the front door. I shot her a mean face as she prepared to leave also.
"Now, sweetie, behave yourself for the baby sitter. His name is Peter and he'll be taking care of you for a few hours." She turned to the Peter kid and said, "My number's in the living room if you need to call me. I keep a Muggle phone in case of emergencies. Lunch is on the dining table. I think that's about it. Call me if anything goes wrong."
"Gotcha, Mrs. Lovegood, but I think everything will be fine. Say bye-bye to Mommy, Luna." He said to me sweetly. I, however, chose to stand stubbornly at the spot without uttering a word.
Mommy kneeled down and gave me a peck on the cheek, "Bye sweetie. I'll miss you." She nodded to Peter and finally shut the door behind her.
Peter clapped his hands and cheerfully said, "Alrighty then. What shall we do first? Play Exploding Snap, color, watch a movie-"
"What's a movie?" I asked.
"Oh, it's like a story that you watch on a screen."
"Excuse me. Are you a Muggle?'
"Halfly." He said, "Is that a problem?"
"No, just asking. Let's color."
My artistic abilities had already begun to show at that age. I had tons of coloring books in my room that I colored when I was either bored or couldn't sleep. First, it had been a last resort, but now I loved coloring. I loved looking at the different pretty colors and combining them to make a beautiful picture.
As I colored, Peter watched me and smiled. He creeped me out. The guy possessed a dark nature that I didn't appreciate, with a protruding long nose that overshadowed his thin line lips. Something scarier than that was his eyes. Those black portals of vision chilled my skin whenever I caught him staring at me. I never had much liked boys at that age. They were stupid silly little things that pulled girls' hair and mocked them like blithering idiots.
I think a half an hour passed when Peter became bored of goggling at my pictures, because he suggested another idea, "How about we watch a movie now?"
"What's it about?" I asked.
"You'll see." Peter got to his feet and pulled her up.
"Do you have it in your pocket?"
Peter snorted, "No. I have to conjure it. We'll do it downstairs and then I'll get you your lunch and we'll watch it together."
"Okay." I said, and followed him downstairs. He got me a turkey sandwich and some soda, grabbed some chips for himself, and then conjured a television out of nowhere. It was like a box, but with a mirror glass thing in the front that I could see myself in. The movie came on a few minutes later. I had to admit that I liked it in the beginning. There was a grown woman and man who were married and loved each other, just like Mommy and Daddy, who were all over each other most of the time. But as the movie progressed, the characters underwent a transformation. The man was shot. I screamed at the scene, scared out of my wits. I swear I could see the killer standing right next to me. The man fell down noisily and then went still until completely. There was no life in his eyes or soul in his body. That was definitely the first time I saw someone dead, whether it was in real life or on television.
"TURN IT OFF!" My voice commanded him.
"Sweetheart, calm down. It's a movie. It's not real. It's fake."
"Are you sure?"
"YES. Calm down."
The movie went on, and more scenes of the grieved wife were shown next. She was not in good condition. Most I saw of her were never ending tears and sobs of sorrow. I wanted to hug her and say everything was alright, but that was impossible. As time passed, she became sadder and sadder until extreme thoughts entered her head. The next thing I knew, she took a bunch of oval capsules in her hand and dumped them in her mouth. It took her several minutes to experience a reaction, but when she did, her throat gurgled bizarrely and, in no time, she slouched back onto the bed and said no more.
Of course, I thought they were sleeping pills which put her to sleep, but as she made no move, I became confused, "Peter. What happened to her?"
I gasped, "What?" I jumped in shock and kicked the television with all my might. What kind of movie had he put on? Was this his sick idea of fun? What a stupid boy!
"Stop it Luna! You don't have to worry about them! They're not real! No one died!"
"I WANT MY MOMMY AND DADDY! Now! I WANT THEM!"
"It's just another hour or so and your mommy will be here. I promise."
"No!" I bellowed stubbornly, "I WANT THEM NOW!"
I kicked him and screamed and screamed until he finally gave in.
"Fine, I'm calling your Mum. Just sit there." He took a phone out of his pocket and dialed some white blocks, "Uh, yes, hello. I'm sorry to call, but she's really calling for you."
He nodded a few times before offering me the phone. I took it reluctantly and held it to my ear, just like he had, and trembled, "Mommy?"
"Are you my real Mommy?"
"Of course I am! Are you alright?"
"Oh Mommy, you're not dead! Peter said you were!"
Peter's eyes widened in horror.
"What did you say?"
"He said you were dead, and Daddy too. He showed me."
"No I didn't!" Peter protested, trying to snatch the phone from my grip, but I ran away from him.
"Are you telling the truth?"
"You hold on. I'm coming, and stay away from him." She warned and the line went dead. I tossed the phone to Peter and practically flew upstairs, locked the door, and dived onto my bed.
Soon, a banging noise came on the door, "What are you doing? Open the door!"
"No! Mommy told me to stay away!'
"Come on! Stop being so childish and open the door this instant!" He said furiously.
"No! Make me!"
A noise of frustration rang through the door frame, but thankfully, he didn't try to break in. Mommy loved me. This was because she only took a few seconds to appear in her room.
"MOMMY!" I ran to her, hugging her as she lifted me and kissed me on the cheek, "Are you alright?"
I shook my head and pointed at the door. She went closer to it and I made disagreeing noises. She comforted me by saying, "Don't worry. He won't hurt you."
He might not have hurt me, but Mommy sure looked like she was about to hurt him. She opened the door and there was Peter, standing against the wall with his eyes shut.
"Boy, what in the name of Merlin is going on?"
His body jerked awake and stepped back cautiously from the enraged look on Mommy's face. I wouldn't have been surprised if she had struck him at that instant.
"Nothing! We were just watching a movie and she got scared."
"What were you watching?"
Peter averted his eyes, "Just a simple movie."
"Let me see it."
"Do you really think there's a need-"
"I said, let me see it." She said in a cold voice.
Peter sighed, "Fine. Follow me."
Once again, I went down the steps and faced the television, or more faced half of it because I had shielded myself from it by hiding behind Mommy.
He did, and after the first five minutes of the movie had passed, Mommy turned to me and said, "There's nothing on here. No deaths. Nothing."
"Just wait. It's a bit ahead. Tell him to move it on."
"Peter. Fast forward it."
He obeyed and the picture moved on really fast without any sound. They finally came to the part and I jumped up and down, "That's it! That's it!"
"Calm down, Luna. Stop it there, Peter."
Mommy saw the shooting scene, and as every second passed, her face showed more fury. Her face was getting red. The real life scene was awesome. This Peter was definitely about to get a beating.
"I've seen enough. Turn it off."
As soon as he did, Mommy started yelling, "Are you mad! Do you even have the tinniest millimeter of common sense? You let her watch an adult movie, you fool! Get out of my house!"
Peter didn't even waste time by grabbing his movie. In a flash, he vanished. I shook my head and hugged Mommy.
"It's okay. He's gone. Now Luna, I want you to know that none of that was real. No one died. Do you understand?"
"What I don't understand is why you thought we were gone from watching that."
"I thought you would kill yourself if Daddy died. What if he doesn't like his job and kills himself? Anything could happen, Mommy! I don't want you to go! I want you forever! I can't live without you! I love you!"
"Aww honey. We are not going to die anytime soon. We'll be here to see you grow and become a beautiful woman, getting married yourself, and having kids. You don't have to worry about that for a long time."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes. Trust me on this. I will not leave you alone."
"Okay Mommy. I trust you, and never break that promise, or I'll be really really sad."
Little did I know then that she would break it before I expected.