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Lost in the Wilderness by Keira7794
Chapter 1 : Prologue
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 2

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The war was over. The battle was done. But the castle had work to do and it protected its young.

Luna didn’t know when it started to happen. Perhaps, she’d later contemplate, that the trees had started to bend together whilst the fighting was going on. When voices became raw from screaming the spells all to new to their throats, and when drops of blood slowly fell down the ancient stones like drips of a tap, rhythmically and endlessly.

When some of the little ones, barely out of their infancy, snuck back into the castle to fight and soon found themselves as little more than lumps on the ground; their mouths ajar and their eyes lifeless. How many people had frozen upon seeing the murdered young? How many people with twisted minds and dark pasts, took advantage of the horror? Luna wondered how many of her classmates had seen the remains of the First Years as their last glance; by the count of older bodies around them, Luna concluded, too many.

But no matter what the aurors asked, Luna stayed true to her first statement. She didn’t know how it happened, or why. The aurors would then scowl, shake their heads and tut. They would presume, like most before, that she was scatter-minded, stupid, damaged goods.

But couldn’t they see that she was telling them the truth? None of them had warning, it swept across them like the plague. Nothing more then a shimmering mist, smothering the survivors into it’s midst. If there were another truth, then why wouldn’t she tell it? So when they sneered and mocked her, Luna would simply look them in the eye and state in her sing-song voice, “but you were not there. If you were, you should have fought. But you didn’t fight, and so you weren’t there.”

They would shift their eyes and appear guilty; instead they’d try to persuade the healers to make her talk. The curse ended with you, they’d point out again and again, so it must have started there too.

Sometimes, Luna would weep, plead that she knew nothing. How would she know when the grass started to grow, when she was in battle, fighting for her life? When the professors who’d given her knowledge were on their knees prepared for the final spell. When the people who used to mock her – scared of what she knew – suddenly laid below her, their limbs twisted into angles of death?

Other times she’d smile – that was when she scared them. Luna would mention her friends as if she could sense them banging on the walls from the outside, using their names and high connections to persuade the Ministry to let her go.

Luna would dreamily recount how brave her friends looked in those swift moments; in those quick glances she caught as spells were cast around her. She recounted how Ginny’s eyes were narrowed with determination as she sought out her next opponent. How Neville’s jaw locked as he raised his arm once more. How Hermione’s hair flowed round her head as if it was caught in a gale, not once lying still to touch her shoulders. How Ron was like a cannonball, storming through crowds at once; as subtle and graceful as he was in his speech, yet as deadly and loyal as his manner suggests. And Harry, how tired he looked, as if his arm was too heavy to lift, and the innocence. That was what Luna remembered most; the innocence in his eyes.

But then it went dark, as the vines covered the windows. The yells and battle cries from the grounds fell silent. The mist seemed to appear, as if from the very air they’d always breathed. Then the world had got heavy. Their limbs felt like lead. They fell to the floor in a daze of drowsiness. Luna blinked once. And then again. Her final thought vaguely wondering if a Digger Bee had been set free. She closed her eyes and knew nothing but the depths of darkness where, in sleep, we often lurk.

The war was over. The battle was done. But the castle had work to do and it protected its young.

This is something new for me. The plot's been on my mind for quite a while, and I really hope you enjoyed my opening chapter. It would mean a lot if you shared your thoughts in the review box - I always make sure to get back to every single person. :) Thank you. Keira :)

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