Chapter Five: Changes
The next day Hermione woke up to an owl tapping at her window. It brought her a letter from Luna, who Hermione had invited to tea the previous day. Luna hadn’t been home at the time, so the letter was left at her house with her father promising to give it to her when she arrived home. It appeared that Xenophilius Lovegood had kept his word. Hermione opened the letter, which revealed Luna’s familiar printing.
Hello! I’m sorry that I didn’t reply earlier, but I was out of the house doing something important and I didn’t get home until late last night. I’m not going to say what I was doing now, I don’t want to tell Daddy quite yet, but I will tell you soon. This afternoon in fact, since I would love to come over for tea. I’ll bring some cookies with me. Thanks for inviting me!
As usual, Luna arrived a few minutes late that afternoon. It appeared that she had only just finished making the cookies, since there was a patch of white powder on the hem of her skirt and the cookies on her tray had melting chocolate chips. “Sorry I’m late, “ she breathed, handing the chocolate chip cookies to me as she took off her shoes.
“It’s okay,” Hermione assured the blonde. “You weren’t that late.”
“No, I suppose not,” Luna said dreamily. “I figured that it wasn’t too urgent either, since you sent an owl and didn’t seem to be panicking.”
“You’re right, it’s definitely not urgent. It’s a big deal, yes, but urgent isn’t a word that I would use to describe it. I think that we should sit down and have tea before I start telling you about it though.”
Hermione ushered Luna into the kitchen, where the cookies were placed on the table and boiling water was poured into the cups. The two girls selected their teabags before Hermione began there conversation. “So, where were you yesterday that you didn’t send me your reply earlier?”
Luna looked up from stirring her tea, which she had just added milk to. “I went to Diagon Alley actually. I had something to do there, but there’ll be time for that story after yours.”
“You’re going to make me go first aren’t you?” Hermione asked with a sigh. She had been hoping that Luna would be willing to talk about something else first. As nice as it would be to get the announcement out of the way, she had been dreading it. Saying it out loud to another person would make it seem much more real. “Well, you’re the first person I’m telling this to. I don’t want everybody else to know just yet, so promise to keep it quiet.”
“I won’t tell anybody if you don’t want me to,” Luna said. Her big eyes examined her friend carefully. Hermione was sure that somehow, Luna knew that this was going to be something big.
Hermione took a bite out of one of the cookies then, chewing slowly and carefully. She knew that it was a childish thing to do, stuffing her mouth so she couldn’t speak, but the extra seconds would give her more time to prepare herself for the announcement. Once she was very sure that her cookie was chewed well enough, she took a sip of her tea and began to speak. “Do you want to hear the shorter version or should I start all the way at the beginning?”
“Start where you think I would need to hear from to completely understand.”
“I suppose that would be earlier this year then. After Ron left Harry and I, we were alone for quite a while. We were both in really bad moods at the beginning, but as time went on we got less frustrated and we both tried to forget about Ron. It had been hard for me to no longer have him around since I’ve liked him for so long, but I managed. I even started to look at Harry on occasion. It didn’t take long for me to push the thoughts of him out of my head though, saying that they were just because I wanted somebody and he was there.”
Luna’s mouth twisted into a small smile. Hermione knew that her friend must have been thinking she was right, her accusation of Hermione liking Harry had been correct. “So this is about you and Harry then?”
Hermione nodded. “Anyway, Ron came back and I thought that everything was fine.”
“But…” Luna prompted, trailing off.
“But then we went off after the battle. My intention was to give the Weasley family time on their own to grieve for Ginny and Mrs Weasley. I took Harry with me. We ended up wandering around the castle and I suppose out of habit we ended up in front of the Gryffindor common room. We went in, talked for a bit, friendly stuff. I went to give him a kiss on the cheek and his head turned,” she felt her face flushing at the memory. She couldn’t believe that she was actually telling Luna this. “I apologized but we ended up snogging. Next thing I know I’m in the boys’ dorms, trying to find my knickers.”
She had said the last bit very quickly, hoping that if she rushed through her confession it would make it less awkward and embarrassing somehow. There was no turning back now though, Luna knew her secret already. So why did it seem so much more awkward telling herthis time around?
It took her a couple of moments to bring herself to look at Luna. When she did, she was positive that Luna knew where her story was heading. However, she couldn’t understand how Luna could look so calm and unaffected when she had just be informed that two of her friends had done such a thing while they weren’t dating. In fact, one of them was dating another one of her close friends. Hermione knew that she shouldn’t be too surprised, Luna’s mind didn’t work the same way that most people’s minds did, but she had been expecting a bit more of a reaction.
“He’s the first person you slept with, isn’t he?” Luna asked.
“Yes,” Hermione said, looking down. The conversation was becoming more awkward by the minute.
Both girls were silent for a moment, waiting for the other to talk. Luna was the first to speak. Hermione could tell from the tone of her voice that Luna was trying not to insult her, but wanted to get to get all of the story. “Thanks for telling me about that, I know you must’ve felt… awkward, to say the least. But that’s not really why you wanted me here, is it?”
Hermione cursed the fact that Luna seemed to know everything before she was told. The fact that her announcement wouldn’t come as a surprise was some comfort to Hermione, who had been dreading the worst. “No, it’s not. It’s something bigger than that.”
Luna nodded. “Go on,” she said quietly.
After a deep breath, Hermione blurted out, “I’m pregnant.”
Although Hermione was sure that Luna knew what was coming, the younger girl’s eyes became even wider than usual. Hermione knew that she must have be shocked that the girl who had always been a Miss Goody Two-Shoes was pregnant at 18 after cheating on her boyfriend with their best friend. She was shocked herself. However, Luna seemed to be handling this a bit better than she was.
Luna looked slightly less shocked before asking, “Do you know when you’re due?”
“Either very late January or very early February,” Hermione replied. She had tried to figure out the date the previous evening before going to bed. She knew she was lucky to at least know the exact date that she conceived the baby, though she wasn’t sure when she ovulated.
“I can see why you said that it’s not urgent then,” Luna said, smiling slightly. “Though it is definitely huge news. When are you going to tell Harry and Ron?”
The question shocked Hermione for some reason. She knew that she would have to tell her friends that she was having a baby, but it never really sunk in until that point. It would be bad enough to tell them that she was pregnant, but to tell Harry that she was having his baby would be awful. Telling Ron would be worse and she knew it. She didn’t even want to think about it. They had been just starting to have a normal relationship earlier that week, without her worries about Harry as well as his sorrow for his mother and sister diminishing slightly. Knowing that everything was going to change drastically from this point on, she began to cry.
Luna appeared to have seen the tears coming, because Hermione felt an arm around her shoulders moments after the tears fell. “It’s going to be okay,” Luna said quietly, though Hermione could tell she wasn’t entirely sure about that.
“No it won’t be!” Hermione insisted through sobs. “My life is ruined, completely and totally ruined now!”
Luna sighed and poured more tea. “I’m sure it seems like it now, but I’m sure you’ll get used to the idea of having a baby. You are going to have the baby, right?”
Hermione nodded and said, “Of course I am. Though I’m going to need Harry’s help with this and try to find a place to work that won’t mind me being pregnant. It’s going to be rough going, but I don’t think I could give my baby up and there’s no way in hell that I’m having an abortion.”
“Then you have a good seven months at least to prepare for this,” Luna encouraged.
Hermione nodded. She knew that Luna was right, though it was hard to believe it at that point. When Luna changed the subject, she was quite happy… although, she had to admit, she was shocked.
“I wasn’t home yesterday because I was getting a job,” Luna said casually. “I don’t start until June 9th, so ten days from now, but that’s okay.”
The statement took a couple of seconds to sink in. “You got a job? Why?”
A shrug was her response. “I thought that it would be good to get some money to help Daddy out, that’s all. Having a bit of pocket money would be nice too I guess.” Luna twisted her hair around one finger and picked up another cookie in her other hand, gazing at it in silence.
“Er,” Hermione began awkwardly, not quite sure what to say. She knew Luna didn’t have a ton of money, but had always thought that she had enough to get whatever she wanted… which, it had to be said, was not very much. “Er,” she repeated, “where is it?”
“It’s an upper-class café in Hogsmeade. We never went there, it’s way too expensive and…” Luna’s voice trailed off.
“Yes?” Hermione prompted, watching Luna flush.
“I know I shouldn’t be saying it, but some of the people there are kind of stuck up. It’s mostly purebloods or people who are practically purebloods who go there. I don’t know how much I’m going to like the people there, but it pays well. I’m actually pretty lucky, because now Daddy and I can go on our trip to Switzerland a lot sooner.” Luna smiled dreamily while explaining this, she had been waiting for her father to save up enough money for quite some time.
“That’s good,” Hermione replied, taking a bite out of a cookie.
The two finished eating without speaking, thinking about the news that they had received from the other. As she began to get up from the table, Luna said something that Hermione really did not want to hear. “You should probably tell Harry this today you know. And Ron deserves to know too.”
Hermione looked up at Luna like she had grown an extra head. She didn’t want to think about telling her friends at all. Telling them today would be almost unthinkable. She needed time to prepare for this, to think of what she was going to say and to get up the courage to do it. She knew Luna was right though. “Can I just tell Harry tomorrow?”
Luna seemed to accept this. Hermione wished she had kept her mouth shut, a feeling of dread for the next day had already set in.
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