A/N: Written for the Username Challenge at FictionAlley Park. General idea: write a story in which your username appears and preferably has at least minor significance.
Luna let herself rest for a few seconds, hidden behind a bush, listening with concentration. All she could actually hear for the moment was the sound of birds twittering in the trees, but that was no discouragement to her. After all, she knew from what Daddy had told her that Crumple-Horned Snorkacks were very shy creatures, and that was why people so rarely saw them. So if there were any out there hiding in the long grass, they wouldn't want to make any noise, would they? It stood to reason. That was just common sense.
The sun had risen high in the sky over the course of the morning, leaving her feeling hot and tired. She squinted up at it resentfully, wishing that she'd remembered to bring a drink along when starting out to hunt for Snorkacks. It wouldn't be nearly as much fun if she had to go back to base now and then come all the way out here again.
And anyway, she told herself sternly, if she did, she might miss the sudden glimpse of a flattened horn as one of the animals popped its head out from cover to have a look around, and that would be a dreadful shame, wouldn't it?
She stole out from behind the bush, crouching down as she moved quietly through the tall grass, ducking her head low below the tops of the stalks. A stray clump of leaves caught on the thin stick tucked behind her left ear and half tugged it away; so for safety's sake, she took it back into her hand.
Luna held it out in front of her like a sword, the tip pointing slightly to one side with the natural bend of the wood. She looked at it fondly. It wasn't smooth and polished like Mummy's and Daddy's wands, it wasn't powerful like theirs either, but she didn't mind. It was hers – this is my wand, she thought – and she enjoyed just having it there.
She wondered if you would need to cast some sort of spell to catch a Snorkack? Daddy had never told her what you were supposed to do if you actually saw one. She shrugged. Oh well, never mind. She'd just have to make something up on the spot if she had to. That was what catchers did, didn't they?
At the edge of a little clearing, she paused to listen again before stepping out to look for tracks. She straightened the badge pinned to her dress; the one she'd painstakingly drawn that morning, in order to make her look official if anyone asked her what she was doing. Because if she had a badge, she could tell them she had the right to go hunting for Snorkacks in the wilds of Sweden – oh no, Switzerland – no, it was Sweden, wasn't it? It was very easy to get them confused sometimes. Yes, Sweden. Of course, silly of her, you could tell by the little blue and yellow flag! She'd always liked those colours, too. They'd been Mummy's House colours, more or less.
She dropped to her hands and knees and carefully examined the open ground in front of her, shuffling along to examine the flattened blades of grass. She felt a sudden rush of excitement as she noticed a distinct trail running across the clearing, only to sink back on her haunches, disappointed, as she realised it was simply the one she'd made herself earlier that morning. She looked around; that little pathway through the grass was new, surely? She leapt up, preparing to investigate it –
She spun round, startled, at the voice that suddenly jerked her out of her thoughts. "Luna, darling? Oh, there you are!" Mummy was calling to her from the kitchen window, across the little paddock of waste ground behind their house. "It's lunchtime. Don't you want something to eat?"
Luna considered this and realised that actually, she was rather hungry. She nodded vigorously and made her way back into the house, where Daddy was sitting at the table, eating a sandwich. "What were you doing. love?" he asked, looking up from the long piece of parchment on which he was scribbling notes.
"I was looking for Snorkacks!" She pointed proudly at her badge, which, in large, childish letters, declared her to be: Luna Lovegood, Snorkack Catcher. "Can I go and find them with you in Switzerland, Daddy?"
Her mother rolled her eyes. "Alfred, what have you been telling the child?" she asked, although she smiled tolerantly at both of them. "Where will we find the money for trips abroad? And isn't nine years old a little young to be trying to catch legendary creatures, anyway?"
"Like father, like daughter," he said, grinning and ruffling Luna's dirty-blonde hair. "One day, Luna love. One day. People will realise how important the Quibbler's stories are, sales will pick up, and then I'll really go and try to find a Crumple-Horned Snorkack. You'll see, Selena."
"Well, maybe I will, maybe I won't," said Selena Lovegood with an amused look. "Luna, promise me you'll go and look after your father if he does? There's no telling what he might get up to all by himself."
Luna put her hand on her heart solemnly. "Yes, Mummy. I promise."