AN: In this fic, Luna is brought to the Labyrinth by accident, because of Jareth's moping around… also, for the same reasons, he won't realize she's there until she finds him… he's sulking a lot after the bashing he took from Sarah…
Luna's Out-worldly Adventure.
Chapter break (chapter I)
A sharp pointed circle.
That's what it felt, Luna would say.
Silvery grey eyes widened in interest as their owner looked everywhere above her. The sky, a dark magenta mixed with purple was out of the ordinary, added with those fluffy stretchy clouds, and you have something that young Luna never seen before, and she'd seen a lot of things uncertain in her short life.
She couldn't even make out a moon or a sun out in that sky.
Then, it suddenly hit her hard, like a stray shot directly into her chest. She felt like suffocating, and briefly wondered when she'd felt like this before, it was quite familiar and even nostalgic.
Ah… when her mother died that day, in front of her, she felt desperation and panic for the first time. Not knowing how to react, since no one's ever told her what to do in these situations, and she'd never found any books within this subject, Luna did the only thing that she could.
What would be the right thing to do, if you find your mother's body, hot and smoking, laid on the ground at your feet? Luna could only guess what happened, and that was her mother's experimenting on spells led to her ultimate end. Somewhere down her mother's arithmancy notes, was a mistake, that Luna was sure. Like she was sure that mistake caused her mother's death.
Which led to her feeling those painful things, like desperation and panic.
So what kind of mistake have taken her here?
She was panicky and desperate enough, in an unknown place with some colorful and moonless sky, where it was cold and eerie. She made a mistake or someone made a mistake for her.
Luna couldn't bring herself to be angry at neither of them… after all, how can one be angry at oneself?
Trying her hardest to quell her panic at being in an unknown place all alone, Luna summoned her will and held her chin high. Her burnt yellow hair hung limply down her back, and she still had her amulets and trinkets all around her body, so she was protected and not bald. That would have been terrible.
Then Luna blinked and removed her eyes from the interesting sky, forcing them to look around her and not only above her.
There, in front of her stood something similar to her school but different in some many, awesome scary ways. A castle. High, proud, on top of a hill and surrounded by a city of some sorts… Luna couldn't make out more details being so far away, but she could see the giant structure that protected both the city and the castle. It was so big and encompassing that she was struggling to find where it begun and where it'd end.
In front of her there was a sandy ground, with tombstones scattered here and there between skeletal looking trees. Abandoned and forlorn , that's what it seemed. A cold gush of wind swept the blonde's hair and made it whip at her face. Luna batted away the strands and once again focused on the castle and the Labyrinth.
A wall separated her from those.
"What a pleasant surprise!" Luna spoke out loud. Blinking owlishly her unnaturally large eyes. And it was a pleasant surprise after all the bad things she's been feeling lately. A puzzle! Luna was fond of puzzles.
A Labyrinth was even better!
A huge, endless Labyrinth was an Exceed Expectations. No one could say that Luna lacked logic if she managed to solve such an outstanding construction.
"It is, isn't it?" A voice commented on her comment, making Luna elated that something agreed with her for a moment. She turned to see who was speaking to her, and found herself staring at a small, deformed creature. Large, red brimmed eyes that were of a grayish blue in color, and a large nose covered with moles. Large mouth with sharp little teeth and a bumpy chin, absolutely no neck that could be seen, and a hairy head composed if wiry strands of hair under a red ratty hat.
He was there, contemplating the Labyrinth, the castle and the city along with her, and it gave Luna some kinship with the creature. His clothes were old fashioned, with puffy sleeves and tights. Maybe this goblin could give Gilderoy Lockhart some fashion tips? The witch held back a smile remembering the narcissistic Defense Professor, thank goodness she did independent study.
Back to the creature.
A goblin. Luna remembered. A goblin not unlike those who cared for the Grigontes' wizarding bank. She never knew goblins were so sympathic. They always treated her so horribly… but then again, he had some uncanny resemblance to a dwarf.
"How do you suppose I can enter it?" The goblin who had his hands behind his back, was looking critically at her behind that large nose.
"It is not a common request coming from one of your race, human" The goblin said with half a smirk. Or was it an evil smile… "Usually they are begging to find the exit" The goblin trailed off. "Only one, and one person alone won against the Labyrinth, and that was a few months ago" Then he smiled truthfully this time, but had a pang of sadness in his voice. "A friend of mine, she was" Luna felt sorry for him, he obviously missed his friend terribly just like she missed hers. What was Harry doing now? He married Ginny Weasley and last time she heard of them, they were vacationing around, even sent her a post card with a funny little picture in it. Luna absolutely loved it, and framed the post-card to hang it off her door frame, so every time she walked through it, she'd see her post-card and remember her friends.
She was becoming such a forgetful person… maybe she should count down the amount of thoughts she allowed at the same time to be processed in her head.
"I don't plan to win against it, I just plan to find the center" Luna cleared her intentions. The goblin stared at her with a little disbelief in his eyes. "It's been a long time since I had such an awe inspiring, logic defying, good puzzle to solve" red brimmed eyes became skeptical.
"How can you find the other side, and not win against the Labyrinth?" This made Luna smile, truly smile at the being in front of her.
"Because puzzles aren't meant to be won over, but solved" She blinked her eyes staring confusedly at the goblin, as if winning against a puzzle was a preposterous notion. "There's quite a difference between the verbs" she hoped he understood it, if he didn't, she'd lose time explaining her notion, and she wanted to enjoy the Labyrinth as soon as possible.
"I suppose…" The goblin mumbled beneath his breath about sharp witted humans, and extended his hand. "I'm Hoggle, a dwarf" Luna smiled again, but she was a bit surprise that he wasn't what she thought he was. That taught her a very important lesson… Nothing is what it seems. She'd remember it for the next few days, then categorize it and file it in her mental library. She had tons of life lessons she'd gathered through her life.
"I am Luna Lovegood, a human" Never the less, she shook the dwarf's hand with a healthy shake. "I really thought you were a goblin… from where I come from, you look like one" Shock crossed Hoggle's face for an instant.
"You know?" He asked bewildered. Luna nodded carefully.
"Muggles don't know they exist there, but yes… they thrive in the magical community quite well, even after the three hundred and fifty four wars that happened the last ten centuries." Hoggle was speechless after this, but a knowing glint entered his eyes.
"Yes, goblins always enjoy a good war, almost as much as they enjoy spoiled sap." The burnt blond haired girl nodded sagely. She guessed by the amount of wars between goblins and wizards, that one or both parties do enjoy a good war. "I'm sorry to say, Luna Lovegood, that I can't help you find the entrance then" It was so sudden that Luna stilled. "I don't want you to lose yourself in there, and I don't want you to face what Sarah did" So Sarah was the name of Hoggle's friend! The one who won against the Labyrinth.
"Although I was hoping to count on your help, I suppose it would make my experience more complete If I solve this mystery by myself, I'm used to being alone now, and I can certainly find my way" Luna didn't mean to sound so mean to Hoggle. He just wanted her well being. But couldn't he understand that this was her goal now? She was pushed in this place for a reason, even if she didn't know what it is.
The dwarf nodded somberly. Eying Luna from head to toe with a slight twitch of his ears…
"I wish good luck, Luna Lovegood. You will need it" He meant to follow on his way, leaving Luna by herself under the pressure of the exotic colored sky. "Just an advice… steer as far away as possible from the castle… The King is too moody these days…" Luna tilted her head to the side. A King? This place had a king?
"Maybe he can help me get back home?" She totally ignored the "king is moody" part of the advice. Many told her she had selective hearing… it was a product of her life in Hogwarts all in all… with so many people degrading her on a daily basis, she choose what she listened out of what was heard.
"I won't care! Not this time! And none of your pretty jewels will convince me to the contrary!" Hoggle said hastily, turning his head to stare appraisingly at her vast collection of"jewels". Did he want to be bribed? Luna wondered. His statement made it seem like it, but the first sentence threw her off for some reason. "won't care, not this time" So he cared for Sarah once, and helped her achieve the castle in the middle of the Labyrinth, where the goblin king resided… the King must have done something terrible to Sarah for to Hoggle feel this way.
But Luna wished to go back home… after solving the puzzle of course. And if the only way to go back home was solving the puzzle, it was like a double gift in one. It made her grin in happiness. Not enough for a laugh - that she saved for special occasions - but a grin was almost as good.
"Ok" Luna nodded, still grinning airily. Hoggle shook his head, muttering about demented girls and their stupid-ness, and how he didn't care… and about jewels made of plastic…
He was gone soon enough, turning somewhere ahead of them then disappearing.
For some strange reason, Luna felt like Alice in Wonderland. She'd read the muggle tale before and found it interesting. But unlike Alice, Luna never went down the rabbit hole – more like goblin pit – because of petty curiosity and a need to escape reality. She didn't know yet why she came down here for.
So Luna started to walk. Circling the walls that separated her and her goal. How do you cross to the other side? There was no doors visible to her, so how would she cross? Ah, the beginning of the Labyrinth now made sense. Luna's will was strong, and she usually never took anything for granted, she wanted an easy entrance, and she wasn't finding any.
That she could see with her eyes alone… but she forgot for a second that she was a witch, and that her wand made a wonderful earring.
So with a flick of her wrist, she had her wand firmly in her grasp. Would she be even able to try magic in this place? Luna closed her eyes and focused on something she felt no need to use ever since fifth year, when the nasty little Nargles were tormenting Harry. A second and a summoning spell later, Luna had in her hands her Spectaglasses, made especially to spot things that were unspotable, like Nargles and secret passages.
Luna hesitated for a second wearing the glasses. Would this count as cheating? Suddenly she felt guilty, the goblin King certainly spent a long time crafting this puzzle, and here she was, wanting to cheat!
But… how can you be at the other side? Crossing the walls. How do you cross the walls? By finding a door. How do you find a door? By looking for it. How do you look for it? Why… Luna felt suddenly silly. If you can't see, you wear glasses! So there was no need to feel guilty over wearing her glasses if she couldn't see. The answer was so obvious it made her a little tingly with expectations.
Without further add, Luna shoved the Spectaglasses on her face, and her vision was swarmed by colorful swirls of magic. It was so enchanting and beautiful, that Luna lost a few seconds her life admiring it, just like she did with the sky. Now, there was no pressing need for her to hurry, so the witch took her time with the view.
When she grew tired, Luna focused on the Labyrinth walls in front of her. The magic surrounding it was so strong, it made little Luna dazed. The magic cackled and danced, it turned random colors of the rainbow and it changed shapes. Pure will, that's what it was. Pure force will. After all, everyone knew that magic was all about intent.
Awe for the Labyrinth grew in her heart, so much that it made her choke on her own emotions. She realized then that there were tears streaming down her face. Then it hit her, so hard she doubled over with surprise… not unlike the first time something or other hit her suddenly like this.
Magic was all about intent, and the intent of the magician makes the magic. These walls were made of pure clear magic, and guessing that the magician's intent was really that, Luna could wish to be inside the Labyrinth, and she'd be… at least in theory.
"That made my head hurt" Luna whispered, removing her special Nargle-viewing glasses. Looking at the walls again, she blinked, wishing to be inside… and then, she was.
It was like being swallowed. Like being covered by an invisibility charm. Pleasantly weird. The walls embraced her, all that magic coursing through the construction embracing her will to enter the puzzle, be part of the puzzle. Luna felt so giddy that she laughed, laughed loud and freely, thanking the Labyrinth for accepting her request of entering it.
When all her breath was gone, Luna was light headed and happy. Her glasses were around her neck, and her wand back behind her ear. She wouldn't try to cheat anymore, and wouldn't try to find excuses for her cheatings.
"Now, where do I go?" She questioned the walls that remained mute. There was two ways, onwards and backwards. "I'm not very good at walking backwards… maybe sideways, since I can see where I am going, but backward…" She sighed. So there was only one way accessible for her at the moment. Onwards Luna Lovegood went.
And will go.
And every other form of conjugation there is. Still, after what felt like twelve laps around the Hogwarts castle, Luna got nowhere. There were only two ways, no matter how forward she went, in front and the back.
Maybe she was doing this all wrong again. Like with the outer walls. There had to be another way around here, one that she couldn't see. Harder than before, that's for sure.
"What an ugly goblin you are!" A voice broke Luna from her reverie. She felt offended at being called ugly, especially since she wasn't a goblin, and even if she was, she'd make a pretty goblin, wouldn't she? So Luna whirled around, making her robes flutter around her, and came face to face with a short strange creature.
"Um… I resent that" Luna told the creature. It was small, and had tiny pulsing wings the color of the sky… the normal sky that is blue that is. She, Luna noticed, a she. Had long bright blue hair and small pearl hairclips. "If so, I'd say you make an incredibly ugly goblin too!" The creature bore similarities with the Fae, so Luna suspected that was a fairy, and fairies, everyone knew, were very, very vain.
"Why you!" The fairy growled in that tiny squeaky voice that made Luna recall her dear Head of House, professor Flitwick. Perhaps he was related to these fairies instead with the goblins like people thought. Luna had no time to think of something else, for that moment she was pushed with all the mighty force of the creature with the height of a thumb, and shoved through the wall.
But Luna wasn't angry, she just found her answer! The ways were everywhere, she just couldn't see it being so narrow minded and only walking forward! Had she walked sideways, would she find this ways sooner? So the burnt blond haired girl wasn't offended that a tiny fairy managed to shove her like a common pixie.
"You do really look like a pixie with this horrible temper of yours" Said the witch as she sat on the ground where the fairy pushed her. Her bum was a little sore, but nothing that couldn't be handled. The fairy sputtered indignantly a few words, then did something Luna wasn't expecting. She burst out crying.
"Everyone tells me that!" Wailed the fairy. Luna never thought herself as a bully before, but now she knew she was one. "Just-just because I'm blue!" And it was such a pretty shade of blue too! Luna held her tongue on this comment, it was obvious the very resented her color deeply.
"People say I look like a human just because I'm pink" Luna looked at her exposed arm. "Or beige… or pale beige…" She wasn't about to tell the little blue fairy that she was pink because she was human. The fairy stopped her wails and stood a little straighter, appraising Luna with a critical eyes… At least she wasn't crying like Luna was the biggest mean thing around anymore.
"Yes… You'd make a good human since you are so ugly" The fairy commented crisply. Luna closed her eyes and ignored the jab, it was easy once you imagine yourself in the point of view of the fairy.
"I am sure I have better things to do than listen to you call me ugly" The witch stood off the ground stretching her legs and massaging her aching bum. It would have been strange had one of her friends walked in on her with her hands back there. But it was painfully sore, and Luna wanted to keep on exploring.
The fairy snorted. Fluttered a bit, then shot through another wall, another way. Luna shrugged, not really caring about the departure, but more interested on her recent findings. She could walk sideways!
End of chapter 01!