Author's Note: Written for Laux14's Multi-chapter Forced Marriage Competition on the HPFC forum – the challenge being exactly what it sounds like.
Voldemort wins!AU (yes, another…), Draco/Luna, warnings for forced marriage (obviously), implications of rape and assorted war crimes, general bad things.
Every other touch runs as cold as ice...
If I get to close, I may pay the price,
But I remember you.
Yes, I remember the things you do to me...
Luna was sitting quietly at the kitchen table. She was often quiet – she had always been, even before the war, so much more interested in the thoughts that went skittering silently through her mind than in the world that could be conveyed through words and sounds – but now, more than ever, she preferred to stay quiet.
She liked to think of it as taking a moment of silence for the people who were dying in the war – and what did it matter if the moment stretched out for days and days on end?
"Luna?" her father asked softly, sitting down beside her. She had been sitting with her hands folded before her, staring down at them and doing nothing more than listening to her thoughts. She looked up at him and made herself smile.
"I worry about you when you're like this," he told her solemnly.
"Quiet… not just quiet, but worried… when you're unhappy, I'm unhappy." He brushed a lock of her hair tenderly from her forehead and Luna smiled again, a genuine smile this time.
"I'm not unhappy, Daddy," she told him. "Really, I'm not. I'm just thinking."
"And what are you thinking, my Luna?"
Luna looked back down at her hands.
She was thinking about Malfoy Manor. About being trapped in that cellar with no hope of escape, with only Mr. Ollivander and Dean Thomas for company, and they were mostly kept locked in another part…
They were mostly kept locked in another part so that the Death Eaters could come down and be alone with her–
Luna closed her eyes briefly, then opened them again and shook her head. "I was thinking about Harry Potter."
"About Harry Potter?" her father asked. "What were you thinking about Harry Potter?"
"Just that I wonder what things would have been like if he hadn't gone into the Forbidden Forest." Luna's voice trembled a little bit and she had to force her smile not to slip.
She had not been able to stop thinking about it since the battle. Harry Potter had gone into the forest alive and come out lying limply in Hagrid's arms and that had been the moment when everything had been lost. Luna often lay in bed now and wondered whether things would have been different if he had just stayed out of the forest, or whether Voldemort would have come for him and everything would have been the same…
"It does not do to dwell on what might have been, my Luna," he told her quietly. "We cannot know what might have been."
"I know," she said. "But I still wish that things had been different."
"To wish is one thing. To let it consume you is another entirely."
"I won't let it consume me, Daddy," Luna promised. "I just like to think sometimes."
He nodded, then sat back from her, glancing around the kitchen. "Let's have some tea. We haven't had tea in a long time…" Luna looked up at him and was aware that he was looking at her quite desperately, as though begging her to accept.
"That would be nice," she said, and he looked terribly relieved. He all but leapt to his feet to boil a kettle for the tea and Luna resumed staring at her hands.
Could she have stopped Harry from going into the forest if she had tried?
What would have happened if she had? Would he have listened to her if she told him not to go? Would everything have been worse – would the Death Eaters have attacked again and killed them all to get to him?
Things had been quieter since the battle, she supposed. Eerily quiet, even – Luna hadn't heard a single thing about the Death Eaters since she had gone home for the summer.
Was no news good news? Should she think that the Death Eaters were taking less interest in people now, or should she think that they simply weren't letting any information get out?
Her father set a cup down in front of her and she lifted it to her lips immediately, burning her lips but swallowing a mouthful anyway. "Thank you, Daddy."
He didn't say anything else to her, and the two of them sat in silence again, but it was quiet and companionable, not at all sombre. Luna found herself smiling genuinely again, despite the slight stinging pain where she had burned her mouth.
Then there was a crash.
Luna had just lifted her cup again and it slipped from her hand, smashing on the floorboards and spilling hot tea on her bare feet. Xenophilius jumped to his feet, grabbing his wand, but the door had already burst open and two figures strode in. Both were hooded and masked and their wands were already out.
"Daddy!" Luna cried, even as her father's wand flew from his hand into one of the Death Eaters'.
"What do you want?" he asked. His voice shook, but he stepped protectively in front of Luna, holding his arms out. "We'll be happy to help–"
"Don't bother, Lovegood," said one of the figures, and Luna recognized Lucius Malfoy's voice. It was a little rougher and shakier even than she had remembered, but it was still his. "We want your daughter. There's no use trying to stop us – we won't hurt her, but we'll hurt you if you don't stand aside."
"M- my daughter?" Her father was trying to keep his voice steady, but Luna could hear it shaking. She was frozen in place and unable to register fear, though she knew on some level that she ought to have been positively terrified. "What do you want with my daughter?"
"Isn't it enough to say we aren't going to hurt her?" Lucius slashed his wand through the air and Luna squeaked as her father crumpled.
He groaned softly, but Lucius had already shoved past him and gripped Luna by her upper arm.
"You're coming with us," he told her, in that low, terrifying sneer that he had used with her more than once while she was trapped at Malfoy Manor. Luna recoiled slightly at his touch, but she knew better than to fight. Fighting had gotten her in trouble…
"My Luna–" her father cried, sitting up and clutching his head with one hand, grabbing after her with the other. "My Luna–"
"Don't worry, Daddy," Luna whispered. "Please – it won't do any good–"
The second Death Eater grabbed her by her other arm and they disapparated with her, and the last thing Luna heard was her father crying.