Chapter 1: Misjudgment
It was almost over. Finally, after nearly seven long years, the early morning classes and long nights filled with homework and essays were coming to an end. In just three weeks time the seventh year Hogwarts students would board the Hogwarts Express and never look back; at least not until their class reunion. Perhaps no one was as excited about this as Draco Malfoy.
At the end of last summer, just two weeks after Harry Potter had successfully defeated the Dark Lord, and his father, Lucius Malfoy, had someone managed to be released from Azkaban, Draco received word that he had been elected Head Boy. In his mind, his seventh year was to be filled with late night parties in the Slytherin dorm and terrorizing all those beneath him; which to Draco was everyone. In reality, his seventh year was chock full of late nights patrolling the corridors and supervising detentions, having to spend his weekends tutoring younger students, and endless hours studying for his NEWT's. The worst part about it was that he ended up having to spend a great deal of time with the Head Girl, and naturally Hermione Granger had been chosen to fill the coveted position which meant Potter and Weasley were two steps behind her at all times. Needless to say, Draco's seventh year hadn't quite met his expectations.
With their NEWT's so close, Draco had decided that if he didn't already know it, he wasn't going to and therefore abandoned his text books and scrolls. Unfortunately, his usual partners in crime, Crabbe and Goyle, were too busy starting to study for their NEWT's to go gallivanting around with Draco, so he was forced to find his own entertainment until after testing had come to a close. The trouble was, there were only so many things a person could do at Hogwarts whilst alone and none of them were particularly amusing.
'This sucks,' Draco thought, as he roamed the halls of the third floor while attending to his Head Boy duties. After deciding to put away his study materials, Draco had spent the last three days more or less wandering the halls aimlessly, occasionally stumbling across someone who was breaking the rules which gave him the opportunity to make them miserable. But for the most part, he just roamed.
"Hey, Draco!" Blaise Zabini shouted, jogging over to the blonde wizard. "Malfoy, wait up!"
"Zabini," Draco said nodding, the two engaging in some sort of weird handshake. "What are you up to?"
"Nothing really," the handsome black wizard answered as he and Draco headed down another corridor. "I'm bored out of my mind. The common room is absolutely silent cause everyone's studying. It's crazy! Even Pansy's silent."
"That's a first," Draco said, laughing. Even he had to admit his girlfriend didn't quite know when to shut up; she even tried to talk to him during sex and Draco couldn't stand that. Once, he'd actually managed to put a silencing spell on her but when she found out she wouldn't even kiss him for month so he decided against ever doing that again. "Why aren't you studying?"
"Don't need to," Blaise said, matter-of-factly just as they were approaching the library. "I pay attention during the year so I don't have to cram."
"Me too," Draco said, opening the library doors and entering, Blaise following closely behind.
"You almost done?" he asked Draco. "We could go play wizard's chess or something."
"Almost, I've just got to finish the library and then I'm free." Draco said, scanning the aisle's for anyone who was out of their common room after curfew. As they reached one of the last rows of shelves, which happened to be the aisle that contained all of the books on mythical creatures, the boys stopped dead in their tracks as none other than Luna Lovegood came into sight. The book that the spacey blonde wanted was up really high on the shelves, forcing the witch to jump up and down to reach it. Most would wonder why she didn't just use her wand to retrieve the book, after all she was a witch. However, her reasoning for this was probably because her wand was busy holding her thick waist length locks in a messy bun. As she jumped up and down, Draco and Blaise couldn't help but watch the skirt of her uniform as it rose and fell with her movements; more and more of her milky white skin exposing itself the higher she jumped.
"Why... must... you... elude... me... you... wondrous... keeper... of... knowledge," she said, punctuating each word with a heartfelt leap towards the book that lay just out of her reach. "Oh, bother!" she grumbled, stamping her foot like a petulant child who didn't get their way.
"Well, if it isn't Loony Lovegood," Draco drawled, as he approached the girl who had resumed her attempts at retrieving the book she wanted. At the sound of someone else's voice, Luna's head whipped around to see who had disturbed her. "You're out after curfew."
"Yes, I am," she replied, turning back to the bookcase and continuing her struggle. "I just need to find out one thing and then I'll get back to my dorm."
"Since you're out after curfew, I get to punish you," Draco replied, pacing a circle around the girl who simply stared back at him with a wide-eyed dazed expression on her face. Over the years, Luna Lovegood had become a beautiful young witch, granted she wasn't your typical picture of beauty. Her thick waist length blonde hair and silvery blue eyes complimented her pale complexion wonderfully. Were it not for her rather unusual personality, Luna would have probably been a pretty popular girl. But thanks to her insistence that Crumple-Horned Snorkacks, among other things, were real, she was some what of a social pariah. "What to do? What to do?" Draco said, grinning from ear to ear.
"Well, before you decide, could you get that book for me?" she asked politely, pointing towards a large tome on the top shelf.
"Loony..." Draco began. "Do you even hear what people say about you? The names they call you?"
"Yes, I do," she replied, turning away from Draco and once again trying to retrieve her book.
"They call you crazy, they make fun of you constantly and they hide your stuff. Yet, you act like you haven't got a clue. What are you on?" he asked, bewildered by her lack of concern over her reputation. When she didn't respond to him, he persisted in his tormenting her. "Looks like you'll always be some weird, pathetic little twit who's so wrapped up in believing that Crumple-Horned Snorkacks are real that she never actually ventures into reality." Luna slowly turned to him, a downtrodden look on her face.
"I'm sad for you," she said, quietly. Without explaining further she tugged her wand from her hair, the long mane tumbling down the length of her back, and aimed it at the book. Once in hand, she turned to the page she needed and whispered a spell to copy it onto a piece of parchment. Draco stared at her flabbergasted by her statement, as he paced furiously in front of her table. Once finished with the book, Luna returned it to its spot on the shelf, gathered her things and headed towards the door. Unable to leave well enough alone, Draco stormed after her.
"What the hell was that supposed to mean?" he demanded, as he stalked up next to her, forcing the lithe girl against the stone wall of the corridor. "Huh? What's that supposed to mean!"
"Don't you ever get tired of being so angry all of the time?" she asked, softly. In response, Draco slapped the books in her hand hard causing them to fall to the ground. "All that anger can't be healthy."
"Where do you get off?" he asked, pacing back and forth in front of her. "Where the fuck do you get off, you pathetic, delusion... People like you are why I wish the Dark Lord had succeeded in wiping the filth out of our world!"
"I suppose anyone who isn't Pureblood is considered filth?" she asked, staring up at the much taller boy with a quizzical look on her face.
"You're damn right!"
"Well, if that happened than the wizarding world wouldn't exist anymore," she said, laughingly. Draco stared at her, confused by what she meant. "Inbreeding affects fertility. If you can't produce offspring eventually your line dies out. There are only so many Pureblood families and they're already well integrated. Eliminating Halfbloods and Muggle-borns would be suicide."
"That's ridiculous!" he scoffed.
"Did you know that you're related to your girlfriend by blood?" she asked, bending to pick up her books. "If you'll excuse me, I've got to finish my research so that I can get it to Professor Snape in time." With that said, Luna left a dumbfounded Draco standing in the corridor, as she returned to her room.
That night when Luna returned to her room, she set to work at finishing up the research she had been working on, just as she had told Draco she was going to. Once finished, she decided to get ready for bed, as it was well after three in the morning and classes started early. While the rest of Luna's night was pretty uneventful, serene even; Draco's most certainly wasn't. He didn't know what it was that she had said that had gotten to him the most, but whatever it was, he simply couldn't get it out of his mind. He had known, the moment Luna had said it, that she was correct in stating that he was always angry; though he didn't know where all of his anger had come from. His life was as good as a person's life could possibly be, so he saw no reason for his uncontrollable temper. No matter how much her accurate interpretation of his anger bothered him, he was even more agitated by her pronouncing that he and Pansy were related by blood. True, they were related by blood, but just barely. Try as he might, Draco couldn't get Luna's words out of his mind.
Shortly after four a.m. Draco abandoned his attempts at getting to sleep and instead went down to the Slytherin common room, in hopes of getting in some good reading before the other's got up and disturbed him. As he descended the staircase he noticed that there were lights coming from the common room. Prepared to throw whoever was down there out, Draco entered the luxurious living space. Once inside, he found several of his friends gathered around a large wooden table pouring over thick textbooks.
"What are you doing up?" he asked, approaching his friends and girlfriend.
"Studying," Goyle whined, running his fingers through his short hair roughly.
"This sucks," Crabbe grumbled, slamming his head down on the desk.
"Did we wake you, babe?" Pansy asked, standing up so that she could kiss her boyfriend. Smoothly, Draco dodged her mouth and instead gave her a hug. For about an hour, Draco helped the three of them study for their potions NEWT's but as the clock chimed five he asked Pansy to come and talk with him by the fire. After settling down on the leather couch, Draco turned to her.
"Pansy, I don't think we should see each other anymore," he whispered, not wanting Goyle or Crabbe to overhear. "I think we're at different stages in our lives and..."
"What the hell are you talking about?" she snapped, jumping up and staring down at him. "Different stages in our lives! That's complete and utter bullshit!"
"No, it's not Pansy," he argued, trying to diffuse the situation. "Look, we're not right for each other and there's no since in wasting both of our time. You'll find someone else."
"I don't want anyone else," she whispered, her eyes tearing up. "You said that we would get married. Or was that just to get me in the sack?"
"Pansy, people change. Plans change. I'm sorry." Standing, Draco left the heartbroken witch and returned to his room. Within ten minutes, he had fallen asleep.
"Professor Snape," Luna said, as she dashed into the Potions classroom with a large portfolio filled with pages and pages of scribbled on parchment. "Professor, you said that if I put all of my research together you'd look over it before the end of term." Once she arrived at his desk, she slammed the heavy portfolio down and waited for him to look up at her before continuing. "Now, the first three pages are the one's that I need you to look over, but I've put it all together just in case you need to cross reference anything."
"Just leave it on the desk, Miss Lovegood," Snape said, turning his attention back to the essay he was grading.
"I can't thank you enough, Professor," she said, with a thankful and dreamy look on her face. "I'm really excited to hear what you think about it."
"Miss Lovegood," he snapped. "Go."
"Thanks again," she shouted, as she dashed out of the room, her earrings made out of several knuts tinkling wildly with every step.
Luna Lovegood was a very resilient young witch. All of her life she'd had to deal with people making fun of her for her beliefs and her personality, and for sixteen years she had managed to ignore it and simply go on with her life, never changing or compromising herself because of their ridicule. The main reason she was able to endure their teasing and taunting was because Luna didn't really care what people she didn't know thought of her. She knew who she was and that was all that mattered. That is until she made friends. During her third year, Ginny Weasley had reached out to Luna and the two had quickly become friends. Through Ginny, Luna had met Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and Neville Longbottom, which instantly more than doubled her circle of friends. That was when she began to pay attention to what people were saying about her, though she didn't let it change her. After all, if her friends didn't have the same complaints than why should she care what strangers thought.
One Saturday afternoon, during the end of the second to the last week of school, Luna was wandering around the Black Lake aimlessly when she spotted Harry, Ron and Hermione sitting underneath a nearby tree. Quietly, Luna crept up on the trio hoping to scare them. As she got closer, she was able to hear what they were saying.
"Did you see Loony this morning?" Ron asked, laughing loudly; Harry and Hermione joined in as they nodded. "What was she wearing?"
"It's called a tutu, Ron," Hermione answered, still laughing at the recollection of what Luna looked like that morning. Since it was Saturday, Luna was able to wear whatever she wanted, so she chose to wear a black knee length tulle skirt and a plain white tank top. Perhaps the fullness of her skirt was a bit out of place but, for the most part, there really wasn't anything too odd about her outfit.
"A tutu?" he snickered. "Sound's like something she'd wear."
"Loony's got some issues," Harry said, agreeing with Ron and Hermione's assessment of the younger witch. "You'd think she'd knock off some of the weird stuff after hearing what people were saying."
"I know," Hermione agreed. "I'm beginning to think she's a bit slow, if you know what I mean."
"That must be it," Luna said, trying to laugh it off even though she was completely heartbroken by their words. "I must be loony!"
"Loony, I mean Luna," Hermione stammered, surprised to see the object of their discussion standing behind them.
"Don't bother," Luna replied, turning and quickly walking back towards the castle.
"Shit," Ron swore under his breath.
"I second that," Harry said, while Hermione nodded in agreement.
From that point on, every taunt or snicker that Luna heard cut her like a knife. In a matter of moments, the only thing keeping her grounded, her friends, had completely abandoned her. She couldn't believe that she had been so naive as to actually believe that they liked her for who she was. Deep down, Luna had to admit that she wasn't exactly surprised by their opinion of her. She had always felt like they were too good to be her friends, which was one of the reasons why she was so in awe of them. But after hearing what they really felt about her, she couldn't help but feel betrayed; the cushion she had built around herself had been absolutely destroyed leaving her completely vulnerable to attack. It wasn't that people started picking on her more than usual, it was just that with no one left to stand in her proverbial corner, Luna couldn't ignore the teasing any longer. Several times throughout the final weeks of school, she had found herself locked in Moaning Myrtle's lavatory crying her eyes out in secret.
PLEASE READ AND REVIEW : ) I'VE FOUND THAT THE MORE REVIEWS I RECEIVE, THE FASTER I TEND TO WRITE (hint hint )
I KNOW THAT LUNA ISN'T TYPICALLY USED OFTEN AND THAT SHE AND DRACO ARE A PRETTY ODD MATCH, BUT PLEASE GIVE HER A SHOT IN THIS STORY. I THINK THE CHARACTERS, AT LEAST WITH HOW I PLAN TO USE THEM, WILL INTERACT REALLY WELL WITH EACH OTHER.