Title: Shoes
Summary: Charlie likes Luna's shoes. Try saying that ten times fast.
Word Count: 494 words
A/N: Done for thelightningstrike's The Alphabet Challenge on the Harry Potter Fanfiction Challenges forum.
Disclaimer: Don't own Harry Potter, yadda yadda. *sticks out tongue*

Charlie hates this type of party; loud, obnoxious music, cheap alcohol, too stuffy and hot. He'd only come because Bill and George had coerced him, practically at wand point. He sat in a corner, sipping at a glass of butterbeer, eyeing all the happy people celebrating the anniversary of Voldemort's demise and wondered what was wrong with him. Why couldn't he be happy? Why couldn't he be like Bill and Fleur or Harry and Ginny? Find a woman, make a family, live happily ever after. It didn't seem so complicated in theory. Even his prat of a brother, Ron had managed.

Charlie sighed. He really, really, really didn't want to be here. It only made him more sullen and morose. He wasn't going to find anything but a headache or maybe a hangover.

Charlie quickly finished what was left of his butterbeer. He stood to leave, pulling on his jacket, when he heard a curious sound barely discernable above the music.

*shuffle – ting-a-ling – shuffle – ting-a-ling*

He looked around, searching for the source of the noise. It sounded like it was getting closer.

*shuffle – ting-a-ling – shuffle – ting-a-ling*

Charlie closed his eyes and turned his head to the side, so his left ear was facing the room. He listed for several more seconds when suddenly it stopped. Charlie opened his eyes in consternation and turned his face back towards the room only to find himself practically nose-to-nose with a small, pale, blonde creature with luminous eyes. Charlie jumped back a little bit, startled, and realized this creature – er, girl – seemed familiar.

"You were looking confused. I just thought I'd come over and make sure that Wrackspurts hadn't gotten you," she explained.

Charlie resisted a wide grin. Now he knew why she seemed familiar. Luna Lovegood. She'd been in Ginny's year. He'd met her several times during the war and at Bill and Fleur's wedding. "Thank-you for your concern," he told her solemnly. He was, in fact, grateful to her; she'd managed to lift his spirits without even trying.

She smiled dreamily at him and then turned as if to go.

*shuffle – ting-a-ling*

Charlie's eyes snapped down to her feet, which were resplendent in large, green, furry boots with bells on them. Charlie smirked. Mystery solved, he thought to himself amusedly. Out loud he said, "I really like your shoes."

Luna turned back around.

*shuffle – ting-a-ling*

Charlie grinned. He was really coming to love that sound.

"Really?" Luna asked. "Hermione says they are obnoxious and gaudy." She looked up at him, a hopeful expression on her face.

"Naw. Don't listen to that stuffy bookworm. I like 'em. They're festive and cheerful."

Luna was positively beaming. "Do you want to come outside with me and collect fire flies?"

Charlie's grin widened. He was really coming to love the girl in the shoes as well. "I would like nothing better," he told her.

She grabbed his hand excitedly and they left the party, both smiling.

*shuffle – ting-a-ling – shuffle – ting-a-ling*