Chapter 60 Strange Light
A year and five months later
Underneath the cloudy November sky there was a crowded hall in the latter Malfoy manor. It was well known that the Malfoys do throw parties, but that one was tad different. Different from the usual classic extravaganza. For in fact, the whole room was an explosion of winter wonderland. There were snow flakes appearing from the cloudy ceiling, falling down gently to the snow covered floor. The air was also enchanted to be pleasantly chilly but warm. It circulates the area with a certain breeze that if you squint, you could almost feel as if it was a snowy afternoon in the heart of the Forbidden Forest. Proving that thought was the lining trees on the either side of the center aisle, their branches were blooming with crawling Lilies of the valley, each plant was glowing with a soft golden light. Upon the two sides of what the white carpet was dividing, there were chairs sparkling with glittered silver on their handles, the other side was with Ravenclaw blue ribbons and the latter, with Slytherin green. Sitting beneath them were wizards and witches who were invited for the special event. The guests wore different shades of the prism, however, the exclusive wizards and witches who were momentarily waiting on the end of the aisle wore emerald green and periwinkle respectively.
And there they were. Thankfully, the guests really do love them-or perhaps, only Luna in particular, to show up, ignoring the high heels digging in the thick snow. The others though, seemed to have had shrugged and brought their winter boots to go by such peculiar decision.
It was a rare sight, to witness such season operating inside a warm place, yet it was the quirk the girl possesses that wished for such randomness. It was too bizarre and rare, it challenged and awakened his father's cocky side. He tends to show off quite a lot.
One hundred nine. One hundred ten.
"You alright there mate?"
"Yeah, of course"
"Must be the 'cold' feet. Ha, get it"
"You're not helping Zabini"
The snowflakes fell gently from the enchanted ceiling. One by one, Draco counted them with an anxious mind. His feet were cold, extremely cold, extremely bloody cold and numb. He had been standing there looking like a passive wreck for almost twenty minutes already, but for him, it felt like eternity. Of course, one would ask why he was standing beneath a room enchanted with snow, wearing a fancy looking suit-yes, a luxurious one compared to the regular pricey ones he sports everyday, having such fidgety mindset, why couldn't he just leave.
Well, the thing is, he couldn't leave. No, he doesn't want to.
Surely, Luna would fancy that. They could run away. She doesn't mind all the crazy antics he has. In fact, she told him they do not need an extraordinary wedding to begin with. He just persisted.
It was more of wanting to promise her something actually. To show every single person he knows that she, of all people, completes him. That he would surrender himself to her completely. To promise her all of him. To try and battle through life's strifes together.
Because Merlin's beard, he will. He will vow all of those underneath the Heavens Above.
One hundred and ten. One hundred and eleven. One hundred and twelve. One-
"Hey there Clem, aren't you supposed to be over there too?" Blaise motioned his thumb over the crowded line at the end of the hall.
"Hi un'le Blai" The infant however, shrugged and pouted, attaching herself to Draco's legs, alarming him.
"Daddy, Daddy, mommy?" Clementine tugged on his sleeve, her light eyes questioning and brows frowning. He chuckled, carrying his daughter to his chest, relieved to have something to distract his thoughts and lessen the tension.
"Didn't you just saw her?"
"Yeah, mommy-pwetty p-p-pwincess" Her eyes lit up and her hands raised themselves on the sides of her head, opening them wide to imitate a comical rendition of a crown. He grinned excitedly, not doubting one bit that Luna looks ravishing.
He wasn't present the whole time Narcissa and Luna were planning for the gown. His mother, a passionate traditional woman, blocked him from seeing what Luna had requested for a dress. But Luna did tell him it was what she always imagined and wanted, and her taste and his mother's do not quite meet. And so he was entirely excited to see how and what they both come up with.
"Little Clem looks beautiful too, aren't you?" Of course, the periwinkle brought her light, piercing eyes more noticeable. And her hardly complete set of teeth was in contrast with her barely noticeable chiseled features, her ever so sweet smile brought warmth and sincerity to her ambience.
"Whewe mommy wo?" she repeated
"Well, mommy's getting ready to marry daddy-"
"Cwem, daddy, wo mommy?"
"I'm sorry Clem, daddy can't. It's how the traditions work"
"Why?" she was extremely confused and if it was possible in her age, already annoyed. If only he could tell her that he feels the same way.
He did not know how to respond to that, nevertheless when he himself, loathe the whole thing. It made him yearn for Luna deeply. And the last anticipation he was in was taking much longer than he thought it would.
"To have mommy and daddy miss each other terribly, I guess"
"Tha's no' nice a'all. I mwiss mommy" her hair bounced as she shook her head. Draco fought the urge to smirk. He was mentally excited for the exchanging of complains about obnoxious wizards that he would probably bond with his daughter in the mere future.
"Cwem, daddy, go mommy?" His little daughter, although just one year old and a half, was quite a chatterbox and a bit sneaky when things do not go her way. She knows how to use her charm just to slither her thoughts and desires if she really wanted too.
"Clem, be patient. Be patient like a box, maybe?"
Thankfully, she's still one and a half, they could still work their parental guidance before she gets all caught up in her angst and well, be a hormonal teenager. Hopefully she wouldn't be as refusing and stubborn as he was. Merlin knows how his mother took care of that.
"like a triangle?"
"Like a... nargle?"
"Like a swirl!"
"Like daddy, yes you got it offspring"
"Pfft, hardly" Draco glared at Blaise and his best man sniggered but surrendered.
"you're hilarious aren't you?"
His little Clementine grinned, extremely pleased with herself for having her daddy compliment her. In her eyes, Draco saw the delight that came from their exchange. Immediately, he hugged her, providing warmth and adoration in one expression. His heart ache for the past that he tried to befriend. It didn't help that her eyes were an exact mirror of his'. He perhaps, saw himself in her more than he ever imagined possible.
"a cwiwcle. Clem patien likkkke cwicle-" she brought her fingers connecting to their tips and made a circle "-cwicle"
"Yes, you are doing well my dear Clementine. Daddy loves and adores you" He wanted to let her know that he would always, always try to meet her halfway and he would always be proud of what kind of person she would become. He would always try to make sure she, and possibly, all the children him and Luna would have, know that they would be there in every step of what life would lead them. He would be their anchor and their mother would be their boat.
Because one of the things he learned about his father during their house arrest was his unexpressed adoration. Narcissa was right, his father really loved him. Amidst all the suppressed thoughts and the things he made himself believe, seeing Lucius be affectionate and open with his grandchild soften the image he had pictured his father into. After all, love comes in different forms and sizes.
But this time around, with him to his children, he would choose a different approach. He wouldn't want his children to grow up with having the urge to put different kinds of shoes just to impress their parents. Upon the altar, he would vow to Luna that he would do whatever it takes to make her, and their future children, know that they're loved.
His daughter inherited Luna's breath taking aura. He always seemed to forget about everything else when they smile. The waiting was momentarily forgotten, the pure glee upon Clementine's face soften the worry lines that were missing in his face
"luh you dada" Those words, they felt new every time Luna and Clementine would wholesomely confess them to him. Looking back, he never thought he could ever have the ability to express so much for people. To love, to accept, to forgive-
"I have to take you back Clem, you'll be a great flower girl won't you?" Blaise interrupted them with the warning that the ceremony was about to start. Immediately, his cold feet went numb and his heart began to beat loudly in his ears. Everything was muted on the background. He swore he did not even processed when Blaise picked up Clementine and she planted a kiss on his cheek to say her goodbyes. He was nervous. Everything became more real and he was somewhere between anxious and spacing out.
The hall's heavy doors opened and his heart still pumped excitedly, he could feel her presence just around those doors. Piano keys were pressed to form a delicate piece and the golden lilies illuminated a soft glimmer of light from their bulbs. Emerald green and periwinkle cladded wizards and witches aligned, forming one shield to hide his bride from view.
First in line were, of course, Pansy and Ron Weasley. Draco and Luna knew it was the best to have Pansy strut on the aisle first. Merlin knows how she would have reacted if she was not included. And Ron, well, that took a lot of convincing to do just to make Draco agree. But Luna reasoned out that he was their friend and was currently pursuing Pansy. He might as well be happy for his best friend. She also begged with her innocent eyes, one that he cannot resist, try as he might.
Ron had Pansy's hand tucked on his wrist, the green tie and handkerchief seemed quite aloof against the redness of his mane; a reminder of their last names and how the prejudice had separated them from befriending each other. He looked quite awkward as well, but he hid them pretty well with the small smile upon his face. Draco made a mental note that he saw a bit of confidence nesting behind Weasley's insecure posture. Possibly, it was an influence of the woman beside him. For in contrast of his unease demeanor, Pansy on the other hand, was completely strutting. She held on to the blue, green and silver brooch bouquet, her eyes trailing and lips lifted to a confident grin. The draping periwinkle skirt of her shoulder strapped gown trailed upon the ground, caressing the soft snow with it's silk. She held her head high as if she was meant to be a bridesmaid all along, embracing the role as if it was a huge honor to partake in. Once they were close to arm's reach, she winked at Draco. There was a look of gratitude and pride upon her green eyes.
Next were Hermione Granger and Harry Potter. That, he was more approving than the first man. Yet, besides the casual status of their so called friendship, there was still a bit of a pause somewhere in between conversations they initiate. Yet, despite the visible but fading tension, the two sides were glad to participate and be civilized.
The two were calm. They moved taking time to sink their roles in. They were quite surprised and overwhelmed with the idea of having such honorable tasks in Draco Malfoy's wedding, him of all people.
Once, twice, the twosome's eyes would leer on each other. Their eyes, a base of their communication. As if actually talking, they moved in synch. As Harry's eyes darted to Draco, so were Hermione's. They smiled kindly, sending their congratulations through silence and understanding.
With the mention of eyes, Draco's mental little self inside his mindset took a huge halt. He peaked through the different layers of silks right across the hall. He swore he saw a reflection of Luna's own, shining orbs. He knew them the way Harry knows Hermione's. He could feel her calm presence amidst the tensed muscles of his own body- the way Weasley and Pansy synchronize.
"Draco, look at Ginny"
"I do have my own future wife to ogle at, Blaise"
And he was confident that she would take his breath away, the same way Ginny takes Blaise's own set of lungs.
Ginny's fiery hair swung across the breeze, seemingly brighter than ordinary with the light color of her long and flowing periwinkle gown. Her brown eyes seemed fixed to the other brown eyes across the aisle, her eyebrows wiggling slightly and lips grinning.
"You're next aren't you?" Draco suggested to his fazed best friend, seemingly impressed with the way Blaise's cheeks turned scarlet.
Blaise only shrugged, the same nervous grin upon his face. Thankfully, as Ginny hovered close to them, the tint on his cheeks disappeared.
And as Ginny came closer, gasps and oohs were heard. With just a few steps away from where he stood, Draco's mother, Narcissa, was crying with tears of joy. Her reddening eyes were also stunned with possibly the most breathtaking view standing behind.
His eyes must've popped from his head right then.
She was beautiful.
"I am proud of you Luna my little bug, gone is the day I cradle you inside my arms. This is still a dream for me"
"It is such a bizarre dream isn't it Daddy?" Her eyes were shining, possibly from the happy tears that were begging to fall or the realization that she was definitely not dreaming. The soft murmurs of her heart made her know that she was awake; living, anticipating, waiting to open a new chapter in her life.
"Look at you, my daughter- Oh, Luna my precious little princess. Daddy would love you always" Xeno choked back a sob, overwhelmed by the running tears that kept on irritating his vision. His tears touched Luna's heart. She hasn't seen him cry ever since her mother's death. Her poor father, the one who tried his best to understand her even if he has alot to think of. The one who raised her the way he saw what's best.
"Mummy, gradada? sad?"
"No, no Clementine. Grandada is just so proud. So proud"
"Daddy, I am so proud of you as well. I thank the Heavens for giving me you. Your little Luna loves you always. Always" She hugged him tight, her heart swelling with gratitude and indescribable feelings.
She was just so incredibly happy.
The snowflakes hugged Luna's calm ambience. They fell with a slow and steady rhythm, twirling through the air as if dancing to the winter nymph's entrance. She moved to the melody and harmony of the stomping ivories. It was as if the piece was made for her, the rise and fall reminded him of her so easily.
The soft glow highlighted the smile upon her lips and her bright eyes locked to his'. Months and months of preparations and hiding plans from each other had led them to that moment. And he was certain it couldn't possibly be more perfect. All the worry, insecurity, and neurotic thoughts evaporated and one, innocent name echoed inside his head.
She always renders him speechless. More so when she always comes off beautiful even without trying. It was her soul that made her permanently lovely. It was what lies behind her eyes that made him love her.
Like a fairy, she was magical and radiating with a hypnotic trance. The gown fit her well. It hugged her curves and swayed gently from her delicate moves. From the thin rhinestones beaded cap sleeves, down to the tips of her flowing skirt's train, she was glowing, literally and figuratively. Her gown, oddly but unsurprisingly enough, was extraordinary and dreamy. The flowing garment defied the traditional white and was ice blue in color. Her bodice, hugging close to her skin, dipping upon her mid back, spreading her skirt dramatically from her hips, traveling down to the long trail behind. Upon the fabric were shining silver beaded details, spreading throughout the silhouette of her dress. They were shining a soft hue of white, comprising to the snowflakes falling above the ceiling. Then finally, through the thin outer folds of her skirt, faint colors of blue and violet appears, creating an illusion of mists surrounding her.
She floated through the thick snow, her feet barely making any noise. His lips absentmindedly tugged as he saw her bare toes off and about. He guessed she ditched the heels once she saw how comfortable she would be with her toes digging in the soft texture. She always has that knack of experiencing the world through raw and honest disposition.
He knew somewhere in the distance, Narcissa must've fainted, or Lucius must have been thinking of throwing an imperio curse on her way, trick her to wear her bloody heels. There was alot of sniffling too, but he did not know if it belonged to Ginny or Pansy, they were both crying behind their handkerchief. Also, he was actually aware of little hands tugging his he did not quite remember when he grabbed Clementine from the ground and laid her flat inside his arms. Or even when his mum clung to him, imprinting tears upon his suit, taking his child away with a knowing smile upon her lips.
He just stood there.
In-awe of her.
As she came closer, she was met with two eyes melting the coldness of her feet. Her Draco was waiting for her with the most indescribable expression upon his face. Merlin knows what she did to have such man to spend the future chapters of her life with.
He stood by with bold eyes looking at her so intimately. A rush of warmth surged through her body and she felt herself waving. He waved back almost instantly, his lips stretched to a smile.
Through a flashback, she remembered the Draco who stared at her with such equal intensity. Suddenly, they were back at the Forbidden Forest again. The same handsome man looked at her as if she was mad and stared at her as if he saw an answer. She remembered the curiosity behind his calculated words. And most importantly, the smile and warmth she had offered. Somehow, her young mind comprehended the lingering thought that they weren't meant to just cross paths for that one sunny afternoon.
And so they continued to meet halfway, bumping to each other in the most usual of days. Day by day, she watched as he grew. She saw the change that came with the constance of time. Now, standing just a few steps away from her, she saw the laughter lines faint upon his skin in exchange of the deep scowl he sported throughout his years. But there were also faded hint of dark circles underneath his eyes instead of the carefree skin he once had. The youthful innocence long forgotten because they all grew up quickly.
"As I could Daddy"
She knew, deep down, she couldn't possibly heal him fully. She couldn't give the stolen time he could've been a normal wizard. But one thing though, as time decides to do it's natural task, she would stay by his side. She would like to change along with him, beside him. Because she knew how deep he matters to her. She loves him.
Her eyes moved from watching her future husband, to the sniffling father she has beside her.
"It's time, my love" Mid-way to meeting Draco, Xeno stopped and held her inside his arms. His words, although holding a pinch of sadness, was heartfelt and proud. Luna could see in his eyes that he was happy.
"Thank you Daddy, for everything" She closed her eyes and inhaled the fresh scent of the memories she whole heartedly treasures. From her nostalgia, she felt like his little Luna again, clinging to him so desperately whenever she would see green light irrupting or hear glasses breaking. He was her hero. Little Luna and her daddy, searching for the meaning of life, together.
"Take care of our darling girls, son"
Draco nodded, his eyes not leaving the dreamy girl who was soon to be his wife. Still to this day, he was still left stunned with the fact that life indeed, was somehow good to him.
"Til the end of my days Xenophilius, thank you" Whether it was the heat of the moment or the gratitude inside his system, he was not sure but he wrapped his arms around the father who raised such a wonderful daughter.
It was a brief one, yet he felt the older man heave a breath and relax some tensed muscles. Draco couldn't blame him, it was surreal, even for his sake.
The crowd was erupting with sniffling and tears, he could have sworn he felt his own eyes get glassy for countless of times. His angel was of arm's reach, her own eyes dreamy and smile was real. He called out her name, probably still in disbelief. She inched closer in response.
He does not know if it was allowed to touch your bride if it wasn't yet being permitted by the official to touch lips, but he did so anyway.
His arms went around the back of her lower waist, bringing her close to him, his eyes exploring her face. Then, somehow, because of the overwhelming feeling of making it along with her and grasping the reality of it all, tears fell gently from their eyes.
One might wonder how Draco was so sure in that exact moment. He was neurotic in every minute.
She renders his thoughts speechless. Comfortingly breathless. Utterly selfless.
With her, he is certain.
How so? How did the neurotic man find peace with such lifelong decision?
"Draco" Perhaps it was her soothing voice. Her voice that left his demons stunned. By her voice, it opened the rusty sink and poured warmth all over his body. It was the foundation that kept him rooted to his spot. She bathed him in cleansing melodies by just the vocabularies escaping her tongue.
Or her smile lies the forgiveness that made his demons weep. Whenever she shines her pair of magnificent rubies, he is taken aback to the memories of his mother's arms around him, forgiving him for simply being a small little boy. It was a garden full of blooming flowers and glowing purity. Luna gave him clemency for simply being human.
And of course, her eyes. Those same warm ones that looked at him from the very start. She provided him a strange light that helped him see. It helped him walk the path of life without doubt and accusations. Luna Lovegood's eyes calms him.
Overall, she taught him how to live with himself. She selflessly taught him what to live for, even if she was hurt, more so even if she knew she could possibly be blown away with the harsh hurricanes surrounding his life or drown in the flood of messy memories.
Yet, she stayed.
That strange little flicker of light that guided him to safety.
Right inside her arms.
She was his shelter. She was his home.
When his arms were wrapped around her waist, she was sure she was positively certain.
Luna is a woman having such humongous faith in fate and she just knows she was meant for Draco Malfoy since the very beginning.
Perhaps it was the way his eyes had always looked at her as if an abandoned house being lightened up after years of vacancy. Beauty being disregarded, set aside for certainty. It sparked a familiar connection brought by understanding. She had already know him.
Possibly, it was his smile- vicious and sneering. Yet, smiling and soft with her, against hers. It shielded her away from deception. It brought details and truth behind hard exteriors. She loves listening to his voice, it kept her from drifting any further than intended. He kept her mind and eyes alive to what unfamiliar territories underlie.
And of course, his arms, the very walls that gladly let her in. The warmth that brought safety to her quivering skin. He pauses her despite the noisy world. Despite the scars and marks around his skin, he held her tight the way he knows how. In them, she felt his heart apologizing, and she can feel him relaxing, slowing down as if the world, for once, does not faze him. In the stillness of their form, it felt like they are one.
With Draco Malfoy, she learned how to live with herself. He shown her reasons worth dying for. He made her ache, cry, and love. With him, she felt understood. He made her long to the adventures and the possible future worth seeing before all will eventually stop with the absence of heartbeat. He could've left her with herself, content with the dream liked world and the loneliness of being the only one who always have to understand.
Yet, he stayed.
His eyes, comforting and assuring.
They could be alone. Together.
He was her shelter. He was her home.
"1Ladies and gentlemen, we are gathered here today to celebrate the union of two faithful souls"
An ending of a single chapter. The beginning of a new book.
1. The quote was from the harry potter wikia page
Gah, this is the last chapter! Thank you so much, all of you, for taking time to read this story. Thank you for sticking up with me after all the grammatical errors and boring parts. Awe, I would miss this alot! Thank you for the fine two years and two months and ten days. Just thank you guys, I really appreciate all of you so much!
I am thinking of making a series of one shots regarding their lives after the wedding and of course, druna babies! What do you guys think? Should I?
Ps: I am working on the chapters, trying to improve and fix them whenever I can. Some of them have been sought after already, so feel free to read this someday again! I'll be waiting for you dear!
'Til next time.