Merry Christmas, Luna

Luna's first Christmas alone. Characters belong to Rowling.

When Luna woke up in the crisp Christmas morning she closed her eyes again. She was the only one in the house and she rather wished that she hadn't been.

Last year she and her father had celebrated together, just as they always did. They had prepared the porridge for the gnomes together, they had made the Christmas dinner together, they had wrapped their gifts together and they had sat down with a mug of Christmas tea in front of the Christmas tree together, talking and laughing and being together. Just as they always did.

The year before that she had spent the Christmas time in the Malfoy dungeon. It hadn't been very enjoyable, actually, even if she liked the company of Mr. Ollivander. Also, Draco had actually smuggled down a plate of Christmas dinner and a slice of Christmas cake to her, which she thought was rather nice of him.

This year her father had been called away on important Snorkack business. He had invited Luna to come along, but that hadn't felt right, leaving the house and the sparrows and the brownies without anyone taking care of them, so she had stayed, even if she had been dearly tempted to follow her father out into the world.

So therefore, Luna spent this Christmas alone.

It was with reluctance she left her cosy bed and put her bare feet on the cold floor. It was with hesitation she went to the kitchen and prepared porridge for the gnomes and made the Christmas dinner and wrapped the gifts - but she felt it should be done, and there was no one else to do it. She poured the three mugs of Christmas tea. One mug she took for herself. One mug she left for her father, just in case he would come back home earlier. She put in on the stove so it would stay warm. Then she took the third mug and went up the stairs to the window just below the roof. She had to climb the rickety ladder up to the window and open it carefully - because it was a bit wobbly after the rebuilding - but then she put the third mug on the window sill for her mother. She hesitated a bit then, because normally she and her father went straight down to the Christmas tree. But this year she actually did not quite feel up to it. She felt that maybe her mother would not mind if she stayed, just for a little while. She took her mug of tea between her hands and gazed out into the snowy landscape.

"Merry Christmas," Luna whispered out into the night. "Merry Christmas, Ginny and Hermione and Harry and Ron and Neville and Dean." she smiled a little smile and patted herself on the chin. "And merry Christmas, Luna," she added.

The stars shone brightly from the cold sky. Luna met their gaze and sighed, a little wistfully. "Merry Christmas, father, wherever you are. I so hope you will catch your Snorkack this time, and that the next time, perhaps I can follow you... what?" She turned her head and looked towards the frozen fields that surrounded the hill. Each dried straw of grass was draped in sparkling frost.

"Merry Christmas to you too, little friends, little folk. I hope your Yule dance is enjoyable, and that your spring will come back so I can dance with you again." She turned her eyes upwards, to the place where the sky merged into the distant forest, and blinked a few times.

"And merry Christmas to you, mother. I still miss you, you know..." she tilted her head to one side, and listened in silence with a concentrated frown for a few seconds. "If I'm lonely? Not really. I have both birds and brownies to keep me company, after all, and Hermione gave me a nice book about muggle zoology that I think I will read tonight."

Over the field, something red and green and laughing had suddenly showed up and was now speeding forth towards the tower.

"You know," Luna mused, "I don't really mind being lonely. It makes me appreciate not being lonely the more... when I'm not lonely, that is. It is good to have some time for oneself, I think, to listen and to reflect and to sort ones thought. To tell the truth, I had not quite anticipated how much thoughts would need sorting. I just wanted you to know that I'm not really feeling bad that I'm lonely..."

"Merry Christmas, Luna," Ginny laughed as she made her broom stop just outside Luna's window, red and cold after the flight. "Don't sit here by yourself on Christmas." She helped Luna to mount the broom. And off they went, to the warmth and noise that was Christmas at the Burrow.

"Merry Christmas," Luna whispered, as she clung to her laughing friend on the speeding broom.