This is a work of fanfiction. I make no claims of ownership over these characters and settings.
J. K. Rowling owns Luna Lovegood, Harry Potter and other characters.
This is an alternative character interpretation and a ripple effect time travel story.
Of Time and the Snorkack
Luna Scamander crawled through the Swedish countryside, her pale eyes burning with a determination that would have surprised any of the friends who thought they knew her. This wasn't just zoology: this, to her, was redemption, or at least what she hoped to be her father's redemption.
Xenophilius Lovegood had, to all who knew him, been thought of as a bit of an eccentric. His interest in cryptozoology had always just been an indicator that he was not quite of the norm, but no stranger than some of his peers and their obsession with Quidditch facts and figures. The fact that he was drawn to the library first and then the edges of the Forbidden Forest next was just remarked upon, not an all consumed character trait like it could have become with others.
Certainly, Selene had seen the kind and loving man he was, for their courtship and marriage were seen by all as a true love match. When they had left Hogwarts and married soon after, it was no surprise to anyone. The family home, the Rookery, as it was called, was mildly unusual, but no more than their nearest wizarding neighbours at the Burrow. The work Xenophilius was most famous for, The Quibbler, had different interpretations depending on who read it. Within the cryptozoology community, it was a well-respected peer journal; those who knew Xenophilius personally felt it summed up the man perfectly. The articles on the newest discoveries in the animal world were always well written, fantastically researched and amongst the best in the world on their subjects. The news articles always had Xenophilius's disrespect for the establishment at their core, but as these were mixed in with satirical and joke articles, it was always hard to tell what his true beliefs were.
The majority of the wizarding public never saw beyond the obvious and thought it was a joke. This, however, was important to Xenophilius, especially when the last editor of the Daily Prophet had met such an unfortunate accident so soon after ranting to his senior staff about the latest attempt of certain establishment figures to bribe him into silence. No better to be thought of as a joke than either a ministry mouthpiece or a noble corpse. Luna thought back to one of those times sitting on her mother's knee as a little girl getting ready for bed and, as children the world over do, questioning the facts as given to her.
"Why do I have to clean my teeth?"
Her dad, with a smile that reached his eyes, told her of the rotfangs and their hold on the world. Both Luna and her mother joined in and added insights as they bounced ideas off each other, fuelled by a five-year-old's imagination. As it was a slow week at the Quibbler with no new research or breakthroughs in the world of cryptozoology, the Rotfang Conspiracy was front page news as well as incorporated in articles on pages 4 and 5. It also enabled Xenophilius to say exactly what he thought when reporting Bagshot's latest speech. His insights were cutting and accurate but thankfully not noticed by those in power to make life awkward for the Lovegoods.
Life changed, however, in Luna's ninth year. Luna's mother was, to all accounts, a genius in the world of charms and spell research. Her private lab in an out building at the family home closely resembled a bomb shelter from the Muggle world, which is what it had started as. Two feet thick concrete walls were, however, only the start of the building's defences: it had strengthening runes carved into every surface as well as Selene's own versions of impervious spells cast as part of her standard routine every morning and afternoon when she was at work. Luna knew that if the lights above the door were on, she was never to enter the 'chamber of charms', as her mother liked to call it. So she carefully checked that the lights were off as she skipped over to her mum's workspace to tell her lunch was ready. They never knew what Selene had been working on that morning and nobody could honestly say if Luna bursting through the door was a factor in her mum's accident. What they could be certain of, however, was that a nine-year-old witnessing her mother half melting, half burning to death was a fate they wouldn't wish on their worst enemy and that it certainly had a traumatic effect on the family.
Xenophilius spent the next week in a daze, hardly remembering to dress or eat; he certainly was in no fit state to comfort Luna. The funeral arrangements were made mostly by the extended family; the local community bustled around leaving hotpots and casseroles. The day of the funeral came around. It was a sunny and bright spring morning, but it had two events that pointed to how the future would go. In conversation with Amos Diggory, Xenophilius blamed Selene's death on the rotfangs; they had obviously printed too much of the truth. Luna also had an encounter with a neighbour. Molly Weasley rushed up to Luna and engulfed her into a huge bone-crushing hug. As Molly launched herself into a dramatic speech, Luna just stared slightly off from Molly and finally asked as Molly paused for breath, "Did the wrackspurts make you do that?" A flustered Molly left not long after that.
That day marked the path for the future. Not even Xenophilius's closest friends now knew what he genuinely believed in any more and Luna had found herself a way to keep people and the hurt at arm's length. The Quibbler carried ever more fanciful stories and even the cryptozoological readers, who were the backbone of the subscribers, began to fall off. Xenophilius's main obsession at this time was the Crumple-Horned Snorkacks, intermixed with his unique mix on the news. This continued into Luna's Hogwarts years. Luna kept herself distant from people and Xenophilius kept himself distant from reality. But as a rock thrown into a pool sends out ripples that have a wider and wider impact on things around them, so Harry Potter's re-entry into the wizarding world affected Luna and the Quibbler.
Luna found herself with friends who would stand and bleed with her if necessary, and for the first time in his life Xenophilius found himself taking a stand and truly nailed his colours to the mast, just in time for the war to rip the country to shreds and to rip Xenophilius's life even further apart. Luna was captured and held at Malfoy Manor. As hell on earth went, she came out better than most: as a pureblood who was needed as both bait and as a guarantee of her father's good behaviour, she wasn't tortured or raped, although having ears and eyes she knew that she was the lucky one, so she put back on the Loony persona and waited. While she waited, the Quibbler became another mouthpiece for Voldemort, and Xenophilius's waltz with sanity become ever stranger. Then Harry came as he usually did, first to Xenophilius who tried to turn him over to Death Eaters, then to Luna's prison where he rescued her.
When the war was done, Luna found herself a hero, Xenophilius, a pariah. The Quibbler, which during the war had gone from a voice of the oppressed to a dictator's mouthpiece, was now treated with distain and sundry by all and finally stopped printing. It was after the story of trying to hand over the golden three to Death Eaters was published in the prophet that Xenophilius finally broke. Returning home after being pelted with rubbish in the street, Xenophilius locked himself away in the charms chamber and his mind finally snapped. It was thankfully not Luna but Arthur Weasley who found him; Arthur had heard what had happened while working at the Ministry and so decided to check in on him before heading home. He found Xenophilius sitting in a corner, rocking and giggling. He was transferred to St Mungo's and he died two days later; no attempts to make him eat or drink had been successful.
Luna took to travelling the world. Her quest to discover new animals was put down as a driven personality, not just the desire to be anywhere but what was left of her home. Her marriage to Rolf Scamander was for much the same reason: a need to return to anywhere that wasn't the Rookery. Rolf was a good man and Luna did love him; they had even talked of starting a family. Rolf had seen how much Luna loved her little namesake, but Luna had one more important discovery to go before she settled down.
That was what brought her to the Swedish countryside, disillusioned, silenced and wearing a hat of her own design: it had runes imbedded within it to, or so she hoped, stop her thoughts from being broadcast. It was her latest theory that those thrice damned Crumple-Horned Snorkacks were natural telepaths; how else did they know not to be where she was looking for them? She now knew they existed. To be precise, she knew something out here existed than hadn't been documented, since tracks and spoors had to be made by something. She was hoping that, if she could find evidence that the Snorkacks existed, she could relaunch The Quibbler, keep it strictly a science journal, and go some way to redeeming her father's reputation, maybe not to the public at large, but within the community that the man had considered his peers. So that was what found her crawling through the trees on Omberg Mountain as she slowly pushed her way into a clearing. She couldn't believe her eyes and just lay motionless for a moment. Directly in front of her was a whole colony of Crumple-Horned Snorkacks, from young, with their immature horns still soft and slightly floppy, through to fully mature old bucks, their horns standing proud and rigid. She slowly moved her hand down to her belt pouch: she needed a photo of this scene, needed it so badly that it was almost a physical thing. She needed hard evidence of the sort even Hermione would accept. But as she looked up from her belt, camera in hand, everything had changed. The old buck was now standing directly in front of her, flanked by two other mature males; the rest of the colony was scurrying away. Well, she thought, the whole colony would have been nice, but proof was still proof.
The old buck looked her in the eye and bowed to her. Luna doubted herself for a moment; had she finally snapped like her father? Had the driveness finally gotten to her? But no, the buck did it again. Oh well, she thought, how can the insane tell if they are? I'll just pretend this is reality unless it becomes obvious it's not. Luna decided to return the bow; as she did her hat, which was slightly too big for her, wobbled on her head, and she heard her name being called. "Luna…" She was sure that something else had been said, but the hat came back into position on her head and it went silent.
"Well," she thought, "bye, bye, sanity, we only had a flirtatious relationship at best." With that, and moving slowly so not as to startle the animals too much, she removed her hat.
A voice filled with laughter resounded in her head. "Luna, Luna, Luna, what are we going to do with you? You are getting far too good at this game."
"Good? Game? Would it be too much to ask what are you talking about?"
"Well, I suppose you could call it hide and seek. I know you've found me and some of the others before, but to find the whole colony is remarkable. I don't think anyone has managed that before."
"Excuse me, but I've found you before? Why don't I remember this?" The male to the right of the old buck nodded at her and answered, "Yes, you've found us before. In my own timeline, you've found me twice in the last twelve hours."
"All right," said Luna, "try to explain that to me slower."
The old buck took over the conversation. "We have many abilities that you humans don't, Luna. Telepathy is the least of them. We also have an ability to move people back along their timelines."
"Time travel? And telepathy. No wonder I couldn't find you before."
"It is not time travel as you commonly think of it. We move you back along your own timeline; we usually do this by two hours, removing your memories in the process. It was a natural ability we developed to avoid prey; in the two hours we've gained, we make sure we are elsewhere. The problem we are having with you is twofold. Most wild animals don't go on a two hour hunt but are creatures of opportunity; you, however, are single-minded in your quest to find us. Also, although we can remove some of your memories, we can't remove your skills, and you, my dear, are remarkably skilled at finding us."
"It's what I do," said Luna with no hint of an apology. She wasn't altogether happy with the news that she had the Snorkacks' equivalent of Obliviate performed on her. "So, for the record, how many times have I found you?"
For the first time, the old buck had a serious tone to his voice. "I'm afraid too many to let this continue, Luna. You are right to be afraid of the effects of being memory wiped too many times by us; I fear to try it again on you. So I offer you an alternative. As we have our whole colony here, we can move you back as far as you want in the past. Take this offer, name your year, and we will let you keep your memories. Turn this down, and I will have to clear your memory, but as to what that will do to your sanity, I don't know."
"That's not much of a choice. Pick when I want to go back, or end my life like daddy, insane in a secure ward."
"His life doesn't have to end like that, Luna. You can go back far enough to stop it from happening."
Luna now paused to consider. She had no choice: she would have to agree to be sent back. But when, when would be far enough back to keep dad from falling down the road to insanity? The day he was pelted in town? No, further back, the first crack was obvious her mother's death; could she go far enough back to save her mother?
Suddenly the little bit of regrets she had of thinking of leaving Rolf burnt in the determination of saving her mother and from that changing her father, too.
The buck looked at her. "It will take a moment or two to call everyone together. We will need them all to move you that far back, Luna." Seeing the look that crossed her face, he answered, "Telepath, remember. You will have all your memories from the last eighteen years and all your skills; you will be somewhat precocious when you get to Hogwarts. Try to stop you father printing so much about us this time, since we do enjoy our privacy. The more you change, the less useful your memories of this life will be. Any questions?"
Luna's head swam as she tried to think of a coherent question. "Do you know what I'll experience once I'm back? Will I one moment be a nine-year-old, and the next a twenty-seven-year-old in a nine-year-old's body?"
"Honestly, we can't tell you. We have never done this to ourselves and no human we have done it to has ever come to tell us how it worked for them. We can only say good luck, and may your past be happier the second time around."
Luna looked up from making eye contact to see the whole colony was surrounding her. Luna blinked; whatever she was expecting, it was something other than this: her mother standing tall above her. "Wake up, sleepy, happy new year."
So my first ever chapter of my first ever fanfic.
Let's be honest here. The tone varies in style as it goes on. I had the intention of keeping this a strictly Luna POV story. I throw that idea out the window halfway through.
Chapters 4- 10 are unbeta-ed and while I use a spell checker my grammar sucks. Please don't complain I know, I'm a 40 yr old dyslexic. I know better, just my brain refuse to write better.
It's not too much of a spoiler to say that by this point in the story, as I write this note I'm on chapter 20. Harry is still only 11 and no one is dating anyone else. (With the exception of canon established married couples.) Don't try to guess who will end up with whom by the end because I haven't decided yet.
However Ron and Hermione is not going to happen and Harry Ginny is unlikely. Harry Hermione is possible but so is Harry Megan Jones.
This is the most important thing.
21 chapters in I have only just got to the first Hogwarts Halloween. I end this there but will be starting a new tale that continues with the characters and story. However the new tale is abandoned.
Consider this a dead fic.
So fair warning.
Some people really like this some hate it. Some can't get round the idea that Luna doesn't keep talking about nargles. I recommend Arpad Hruntr for those who love the cannon Luna. I can't write her that way so I have given her an alternative personality that explains those habits without having to write those habits.
At this point the books are canon and Luna has gone everything you've read about. I have however changed her motives a touch.