Author's Notes: Written for Masks and Teapots' Women To Look Up To Challenge on the HPFC forum.
In just a few weeks, International Women's day is going to take place. JK Rowling gave us some fantastic strong female characters to play with. I love romance as much as the next girl, but I feel like in fanfiction, women tend to be portrayed more as half of a romantic pairing than the amazing person than they are on their own.
The character I was given was Luna Lovegood.
The summer after her fifth year was the summer Luna chose to paint her ceiling.
She hummed and smiled to herself as she waved her wand, lifting pots of paint and a paintbrush into the air and then climbing her bookshelf and lying on her back just below the ceiling.
Luna lost track of time while she mixed colours and smeared them across the wooden boards. What began as simple shapes soon took form, and Luna was scarcely even aware of what she was painting until she found herself staring right into Ginny Weasley's bright, happy face.
"Luna? What are you doing?"
At the sound of her father's voice, she rolled over onto her stomach and smiled down at him. There was a smear of pink paint over her nose, and though she wasn't aware of crying, Xenophilius could have sworn he saw tears sparkling in her eyes.
"Painting what, my Luna?" Xenophilius sat down on her bed, looking up to see her artwork.
Luna turned over again and lifted her paintbrush, ignoring the paint trickling down her wrist as she dabbed the tip of the brush against Ginny's nose, skilfully painting in freckles.
Father and daughter sat in silence for a long moment while Luna smiled and kicked her feet and widened Ginny's smile just a little, then Xenophilius stood.
"My brave girl…" he murmured, then descended the stairs.
He cried for his daughter, his darling daughter, who didn't ever frown because she didn't have enough friends, only smiled because she did have some.
He had never known anyone so brave.