title: as the moon was rising in your eyes
pairing: harry/luna. mentions of harry/ginny.
summary: the boy who lived and the girl who lives; it is a terrible affliction, you know, to not be able to dream.
a/n: written for the Harry Potter comment ficathon, but I sort of added it to the fairytale prompt meme too. My god, Luna is beautiful and terrible to write all at once. I can't believe I wrote Klaus/Caroline yesterday and this today. I'm just stopping writing forever now, this table is the devil.
warning: post DH. Epilogue compliant. Effects of post-war trauma
disclaimer: disclaimed. I also don't own anything referenced including that one line from Alice in Wonderland. Image source.
prompt: 018: the bridge to the other world
She spins and spins and spins in his mind, dancing around all the corners till there's not an inch of space left that she hasn't touched with her hands.
What are you doing here? he asks.
But she only laughs.
Sometimes, he remembers.
It is more than a memory though. He lives it all over again, over and over again; Fred falls and Lupin is on the ground, his eyes blank, staring, and all around him there is deathdeathdeath, all around, and everywhere, till he's not sure he knows the meaning of the word anymore.
And then the scene stills, and she is there, dancing beneath the music from another room.
Why are you always dancing? he asks a different question each time.
Why not? she counters.
He finds he has no answer.
There is Lunainhismind and there is a Lunaintheworld and sometimes they are the same person.
"Trokenhursts are bad for you," Lunaintheworld tells him seriously, when he's sitting on the ground, arms around his knees, and the world is about to end again, "they slip into your mind and steal your dreams. And then you can never dream again."
"I dream about you every night", he offers, irrelevantly.
Maybe you're in love with me, Lunainhishead says thoughtfully, how very interesting.
"Maybe there is a different type of Trokenhurst that does that?" Lunaintheworld looks at him, through him, "how very interesting."
What does it mean? he asks Lunainhishead.
"It means the world began a long time ago," Lunaintheworld replies pleasantly.
He always finds her when he is not looking.
There's blood and there are fallen heroes and there's him and he's lost and he's nobody and he's the savior of the world.
He sits by the water, while she dances under the moonlight and every blade of grass whispers LunaLunaLuna but he doesn't know if they're calling out to the girl or the moon. Maybe both.
I don't want to save the world.
She gestures lightly to his hand, and he finds himself standing up, but when he reaches out to touch her, she spins away again.
But it is such a nice world, Harry, she voices in distress, her steps faltering for a second, it has friendship and love and tiny sprockens. It is the only world out of the thirteen that has sprockens, you know.
Then she smiles at him and he believes in Nargles and he knows what a sprocken is. Everyone does.
I don't want to save the world, but he's less sure this time.
She laughs in delight and reaches out her hands towards him, maybe the world will save you instead, Harry.
"Are you still dreaming about me?" Lunaintheworld asks him.
He thinks of lying, "yes."
"I don't dream about you." she informs him, "I think that potion that made mum explode opened Pandora's Box and then the Trokenhursts stole my dreams. It is such a terrible affliction, you know, to not be able to dream."
He stays silent and thinks: it does not do to dwell on dreams and forget how to live.
"Although, it does not do to dwell on dreams and forget how to live." she quotes, her eyes staring into something he can't see, "someone very, very clever told me that."
He looks up, startled, "someone once said that to me as well."
"Oh, do you have a pet knobblykook too, then?" she asks in pleased surprise, "maybe yours and mine can be friends. It can get so lonely when you're the only knobblykook in the world that belongs to someone."
"Would you dream about me," he asks instead, even though he should be practicing spells to save the world, "if you could, I mean?"
"Oh I can dream," she smiles at him just as Lunainhishead does, "There is nothing that you can dream up that isn't here in this world already, you know. It's just that most people need to close their eyes to see it."
I asked Ginny to marry me.
He is sitting on the bleachers, and she's on the grass of the Quidditch Field, and tonight her dance has more wildness than structure and he thinks there is magic in her steps.
He does not know how she hears him from so far away, but she does like she always does.
I like Ginny, her voice floats across to him from the ground, carrying on the air she dances with, she's my friend.
He thinks about that for a moment.
I love her, he says finally, the Boy Who Lived.
It is a nice feeling, being loved, The Girl Who Lives replies, I like being loved.
He thinks he won't say it.
I think I love you too. He's almost certain he just thinks it, but this is all in his mind so maybe his thoughts are words.
She looks at him with wide grey eyes that give the moon its light.
It cannot be love if you're thinking, she informs him seriously.
He reaches out his hand but he can never touch unless she touches first. It's a Rule.
I know I love you, he says because it is important. For some reason it is important.
She turns to him, perplexed, but if you knew it, then it would be something to know, like the dates in the History of Magic books that Professor Binns made us remember. The dates in the History of Magic books aren't love, Harry.
I love you; he tries yet again, desperate.
She raises her hand high above her head and the sky falls down on him, it must be love then.
"Maybe you should try some sort of a potion," Lunaintheworld says, only half with him, "if you do not like dreaming about me, I mean. I am sure Hermione Granger can make one for you. She is the cleverest girl in this world."
"I don't mind it," he shoves his hands in his pocket and looks at her feet.
She smiles brilliantly and eclipses the sun.
He's sitting in one of the thousand chairs of the Great Hall and she is dancing on the table, her feet barely touching wood.
I'm getting married tomorrow.
He thinks his dreams would be mundane if she didn't waltz through them. Then they would be about war and blood and death and so much death and trivial, monotonous things like that. These days in his dreams he believes in magic.
Name your daughter after me, she says brightly, and then stops to think for a moment, you can name your son after me, but the other boys will laugh, I think.
She's not real, he knows. She has never been real. You're mad, he says, bitter, harsh. This is something close to goodbye. You don't fit in.
She touches his arm so gently that it almost cuts open his heart, but don't you see, Harry, a touch of madness keeps you sane. You're in my world right now, she points her finger at the chandeliers and he sees that the light is just glowing Castergnomes, and we're all mad here, you know.
I don't want to go, he sounds desperate, even to himself, but he doesn't care. Not here.
You have to; she opens her eyes wide, and he drowns, it is such loneliness going back when you've stayed here too long, Harry. It's like being the only knobblykook in the world that belongs to someone.
I need to— he clumsily reaches out to her, supplicating, just once, I need to—
He touches her and breaks The Rule, and she explodes in a shower of shower of glitter and dust and she's all around him, all over him, and she's nowhere.
He wakes up shivering.
Lily Luna is born on a Tuesday.
"I don't dream about you anymore," he says quietly to Luna, as she bends over the crib, and Ginny looks on from her place on the bed, a soft smile on her face. There is only one Luna now.
"That is a good thing, I think," she says thoughtfully, "it is so easy to fall in love with dreams and it would just be such a dreadful burden to carry, would it not?"
He looks down at his daughter's tiny hands and thinks of little sprockens that only exist in one world out of the thirteen. Doesn't answer.