Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again
By Anne B. Walsh
BYOT. Also, songs are from The Phantom of the Opera.
DÃ©jÃ vu. The sense that one has been in a place, or a situation, before.
Luna Lovegood lowered the hood of her cloak as the cool night wind swirled the autumn leaves past her feet. The grave in front of her was wreathed in its rose vines, as it had been when she had come here in June, but no blooms were visible now, in November. Neville’s magic was strong, but not that strong.
And now I am alone, truly alone. I have no vision to follow, no real reason to be here. Except to say what I have been longing to say for months.
A bell tolled in the distance, giving her a note. She stepped forward, laid her hand on the gravestone, and began to sing.
You were once my one companion,
You were all that mattered
They’d spent entire days together in the months before it happened, wrapped up in each other, secure from anything the world could throw at them.
You were once a friend and loverâ€”
Then my world was shattered
How could a few brief nights have so radically altered her entire life?
Wishing you were somehow here again,
Wishing you were somehow near
She hadn’t wanted to believe it when Hermione told her the news, but she’d known it must be true, as she had since her vision that fateful summer.
Sometimes it seemed if I just dreamed,
Somehow you would be here
His voice had called her to the cemetery in a dream, reminded her of what she had to do. She had taken his dagger, brought back by Hermione, and gone out to meet her destiny.
Wishing I could hear your voice again
Knowing that I never would
She’d agreed to go away with Lucius Malfoy. She’d said all the right things to make him trust her, to make him believe her.
Dreaming of you won't help me to do
All that you dreamed I could
And when they were safely away from the cemetery and anyone who might help him, she’d stabbed him with the dagger made of silver.
He had died as he deserved.
Luna began to walk around the gravestone, looking at her surroundings.
Passing bells and sculpted angels,
Cold and monumental,
She’d buried herself in the cause for the months since then, and only occasionally let herself feel anything. The day Meghan had brought her a piece of news was one of the rare exceptions.
Seem, for you, the wrong companionsâ€”
You were warm and gentle
The remembered warmth of that last night together, the one that had brought about the miracle now rounding her belly, stung her eyes and threatened to thicken her voice.
Too many years fighting back tearsâ€”
Why can't the past just die?
Her grief was enough in monthsâ€”what would it be like in years? She had no idea. Time passed so strangely without battles to mark the days, without the distraction of having to keep her own life and the one depending on her intact.
Luna took a deep breath for the final chorus.
Wishing you were somehow here again,
Knowing we must say goodbye
Accepting that, believing that this time there would be no miracle, had been the hardest thing she had ever done.
Try to forgive, teach me to live,
Give me the strength to try
She knelt in front of the gravestone, her hands clasped on its corners.
No more memories, no more silent tears,
No more gazing across the wasted years
One hand caressed the name engraved on the stone beneath the rose vines.
Help me say goodbye
"Please," she whispered.
Help me say goodbye
The final high note trailed off into the night.
"Would you settle for hello?" said a voice from behind her.
Luna gasped and whirled.
Draco stood behind her, at the foot of his own grave, translucent in the moonlight but smiling at her with all his heart in his eyes.
"No," Luna whispered, her own heart quivering. "Please, no, not thisâ€”"
"It’s all right," Draco said, moving a few steps closer to her and offering her his hand. "I’m not a ghost. I promise."
Tentatively, Luna reached out and clasped his hand.
It was real. Solid and warm in her grasp, and she let him pull her upright and take her in his arms, and threw her own around him as though she’d never let go. "How?" she breathed, clinging to him tightly. "How?"
"I can’t explain too much," Draco said, gently breaking her free and seating himself cross-legged on the ground. Luna quickly did the same. "But it’s to do with the oath, the Pack-oath or Pride-oath or whatever. Its real name is the Oath of the Guardians. And people who swear itâ€”well, they get a choice when they die. They can go on like everyone else, or they can do... something else. Something more."
"And you chose that," Luna said surely.
"Yes. I did." Draco raised his head in pride. "I’m a Guardian now. Or a Guardian in training. It won’t be official until all of us are there."
"All of us..." Luna began to smile. "You mean the Pack and the Pride, don’t you?"
Draco nodded. "No one has to come," he said. "But when they see how much good they could doâ€”how much they could helpâ€”I don’t think any of us would say no to that. I couldn’t. And being a Guardian lasts a long time. About a thousand years."
"A thousand years," Luna repeated, her heart beginning to pound. "A thousand years... with you?"
"That’s why I had to come tonight." Draco twined his fingers in her hair, sliding them down its length, and rested his other hand on her rounded belly. "The sisters let me look at some of their work. You have a long time ahead of you still. A lot to do here, in this world, before you make your choice. I wouldn’t blame you if you found someone else, especially with this to think about." His hand stroked once down the soft curve. "But..."
"But?" Luna prompted when he was silent.
"But if you’re joined to someone that way, for that long, even if it wasn’t true love to begin with, it grows into love along the way. And that might make you decide not to be a Guardian, because that would mean a thousand years without the one you love." Draco was carefully not meeting her eyes. "If you did decide to stay, you would have to give up feeling that kind of love, because you can’t be a good Guardian if you’re forever grieving. You’d still be with us, and doing the same work we were, but you wouldn’t be able to feel that way about anyone. Ever."
Luna laid her own hand over Draco’s. "Are you telling me that all I need to do is wait?" she asked quietly.
Draco’s head snapped around. "Luna, I don’t want you to be unhappy, and you have the baby to think ofâ€”this is your life, your whole life, you can’t just swear off that kind of love forever because I’m goneâ€”"
Luna laid a finger on his lips, stopping him. "You’re right," she said. "It is my life. And that means I can decide what to do with it." She pressed down gently on Draco’s hand, and felt an answering kick from within her. Draco’s eyes blossomed into wonder. "And I decide to wait. As long as it takes."
"Are you sure?" Draco looked into her eyes, turning his hand over to close it around hers. "Your entire life, alone, just for me?"
"I won’t be alone. I have the Pride. Besides, my life can’t be much longer than a hundred years, and you said we would be Guardians for a thousand." Luna slid her free hand around Draco’s head and cupped it gently, pulling him forward towards her. "I would wait a thousand years," she whispered against his lips, "to spend only a hundred with you."
His kiss tasted of salt, and she realized he was cryingâ€”or were those her tears on his lips? She couldn’t tell.
When they were finished, Draco stood. "I can’t do this anymore," he warned her, turning his face upwards to the moonlight. "This was the only time."
"Do you really think I’ll forget?" Luna smiled as her lover’s outline began to shimmer. "I love you. That doesn’t change."
Softly, she sang.
Anywhere you go, let me go too
Draco’s hand went to his lips, and a gust of wind brushed her cheek as his form faded completely away. "Until we meet again," his voice whispered in her ear.
Luna kissed her fingertips and laid them against the carven name on the gravestone. "Until that day," she murmured, then let her voice soar out into the night, finishing the song.
Love me, that’s all I ask of you
Whew. Didn’t know that would be quite so hard to write. So, what’d’ya think?