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Comparison of the Incompatible

characters: Luna Lovegood, her father, Katie Bell.
ships: None.
notes: Events referred to in this did take place in another one of my other fics. Don't worry, though, background reading won't be necessary.

~


Katie Bell was sitting in the library, researching for an essay on the various and sometimes unexpected uses of poisonous mushrooms – healing salves were a prevalent one. She had positioned herself facing the window so that the sun was shining on an angle into her eyes, causing her vision to be bright and blurry, tinting the black words on her page to red. The weather was ideal for quidditch practice that afternoon, she reflected, though the wind was brisk.

“You have leaves in your hair,” said a quiet voice, interrupting her.

Katie emerged from her sun cocoon to see a petite, blond girl sitting opposite her. The child's wand was placed behind her ear and protruded like a single rigid antenna. This, in combination with her unsettling, surprised eyes, gave her the look of an injured insect. Loony, she was called, Katie remembered.
Coming from a girl wearing radish earrings, contempt for a simple hair adornment made of leaves was a little rich. The leaves had been a gift.  “Yeah, I do,” said Katie laconically, turning her eyes back to the text.

Loony did not take the hint, however, and spoke again. “You fell once,” she said.

“What?” asked Katie.

“In the hallway. I helped you up.”

“Well, thanks . . .” Katie responded uncertainly, turning again back to her text and this time receiving the peace she desired.

*


It wasn’t lunacy, though, that made Luna Lovegood the way she was. It was poetry.
Luna had discovered poetry one day during the winter, when she was quite young. It wasn’t black and white, page-marching, written poetry, but the poetry in life – the presence of unexpected connections; the construction of correlations where they ought not to be made; comparison of the incompatible.
Poetry made her like an open blossom face to the sky, collecting a pool of rain all day long. One of those flowers you find in the jungle that soon becomes its own ecosystem, insects finding home in the stagnant waters, a mother frog carefully placing a single gelatine egg between its petals, new plants growing inside this hospitable one. She felt every thought and moment taking seed in her, she felt every day replenishing her. Suddenly life was filled with more than life.

It was cold that day, too cold to go out into the garden, and Luna was in the kitchen with her father, standing on a chair slicing vegetables for a salad. He was heating a pot of stew on the stove, talking animatedly about the Artic Pallid-winged Sqwuck. “They live in colonies,” he was saying, “thousands of sqwucks together.”

Luna finished with the carrots and brushed them clumsily off of the counter and into her palm, struggling to capture every stray orange disk. She dropped them into the bowl with the lettuce, and picked up a green pepper.

Her father continued. “They make their homes in great chasms in the ice, by using their hot breath to melt pockets in the crevasse walls – and then they all huddle in together, hanging upside-down, to sleep. Thousands of them, belly to belly, for warmth.”

Luna sliced the pepper in half, and saw the pale seeds suspended from the roof of the pepper, belly to belly on this cold day. And she felt a great warmth spread through her.

*


Luna went to the library to find a quiet place to read. It was a sunny afternoon, and perhaps a walk around the grounds would have been nice, but it was getting to a chillier time of year, and Luna wasn’t in the mood for that. There were too many abrasive people milling cleverly around Ravenclaw house. So she took her book – Living in Lapland: Memoirs of a Clan Queen – and wandered into the Hogwarts library, looking for a suitable table among the shelves. There were a few people around, mostly people who she knew by appearance but not name. She saw Katie Bell from the Gryffindor quidditch team sitting alone by the window, smiling to herself for no visible reason. It was such a pleasant smile: Luna was glad to have the fortune of seeing it. In Katie’s hair, apparently attached to the cord binding it, were three small, perfect leaves. They were beautiful red and gold, like the Gryffindor house colours, each one a tear shape with an intricate spiralling tendril emerging from the tip. They were so nice that Luna had to acknowledge them. She sat down on the other side of the table “You have leaves in your hair” she said.

“Yeah, I do,” Katie replied, glancing up and then back to her reading – something very interesting, Luna guessed.

To Luna, the colour and texture of the leaves evoked their descent from the tree, falling down from a great height. “You fell once,” she said to Katie.

“What?”

People fall fairly often, Luna reflected, so perhaps she didn’t remember. “In the hallway. I helped you up,” she prompted.

“Well, thanks,” Katie replied nicely.

Luna nodded her welcome, and opened her book, settling into comfortable silence.




fin

Comments

sushinase
Mar. 2nd, 2006 09:41 am (UTC)
oh i love it! it's so very special :D a wonderful insight into the mind of Luna. and i love how you show us the same situation from two different points of views :) simply wonderful :)

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aolanispylaris
Aolani Spylaris

abt. here

Harry Potter fanfiction is what I do here, but occassionally I might do something visual or multimedia.

If you believe you know my RL identity, please be discreet. I explore some sensitive issues here, and only your kindness and my anonymity makes that honesty possible.