A/N: After reading a couple of these, I couldn't resist making an attempt myself. The challenge is that you put a music player (I-pod in my case) on shuffle and write drabbles to the songs that appear. I included small parts of the lyrics just to give those of you who haven't heard the songs an idea what they're about. Apparently, the variation in my music taste could be questioned, but anyway… This is new for me, so please let me know what you thought. (It's supposed to be unedited, though, so don't be too hard on me…)
I. Once You've Loved Somebody – Dixie Chicks (Neville Longbottom)
I should go out tonight, get on with my life, break these chains of solitude
With a little luck and a little help, I might even find myself in the arms of someone new
He hates this. He's supposed to be happy just to be alive. But he can't. Well, maybe, if he'd really think about it – of course he is. Of course being alive still matters. He's got friends, and he's got his grandmother. And he's got a whole life ahead of him. But he doesn't have her.
It's not exactly what his already shaky self-esteem needed. His first love, and she simply grew out of him, while he was anxiously awaiting her return. (Or, worse, she never did love him.) He would feel used, except that it's Luna. She wouldn't do that. And she seemed truly sorry, she did, but still… Why didn't she just love him then? He waited. He barely slept, imagining what could be happening to her, his Luna. He fought for her. And now, she's doesn't want him. He's alone.
"Hi Neville." Hannah Abbott takes a seat next to him just as his extra-large Firewhiskey arrives. She smiles and looks almost, maybe, alive.
II. Top of the World – Dixie Chicks (Hannah Abbott)
Think I broke the wings of that little songbird
She's never gonna fly to the top of the world right now
She hates this. She shouldn't be sitting here, alone, weeping. She should be helping someone. Maybe assist in the rebuild of the school, like most of the DA members (that is, those who are still alive and not hospitalized).
Hannah isn't injured. She's here. She's alive and here and she should be doing something. But she can't go back there. She just can't. It's her school, her home for seven years, but she can't, because that's where she was told that her mum was dead, and that's where she saw so many of her friends brutally murdered or hurt while she herself was just there and okay and yet so damn not okay – and she can't.
So she stays here, in the corner of Susan's apartment that has become hers, sobbing violently. No one will hear her anyway because how could she ask for help – she's fine! She's not lying with her face destroyed in St Mungo's like Lavender Brown. She hasn't lost her brother like Dennis Creevy, or her twin like George Weasley. Hannah has only lost her mother and that was ages ago. She should be over that by now. She should be helping others.
Like Neville. He's not okay. She has seen him in Diagon Alley a few times and his eyes have lost that sparkle, all the motivation that she used to see there. He needs someone, like she needed someone last year, when he came through for her. She owes him. And she wants to be there for him, she does, but how is she supposed to help anyone, when she can't even get up from her dusty corner? She can't help anyone, she can't even look at her school or at all the broken people walking around everywhere, carrying too much pain. She can't even get out of this apartment without Susan forcing her. She's of no use to anyone. She wants to be, so desperately, but right now, she can't.
She just cries, recollecting her mother's soft touch, her mother singing to her when she was little, chasing away every nightmare. (But this nightmare is reality, and she knows, really, that even her mother wouldn't have been able to fix this.)
III. Beautiful Disaster – Kelly Clarkson (Ginny Weasley)
He's a tragedy with more damage than a soul should see
But do I try to change him, so hard not to blame him
(If I could hold on, through the tears and the laughter
Would it be beautiful, or just a beautiful disaster?)
She hates this. He left, abandoning her without even a proper explanation. She should hate him for it. She should be able to hate him for choosing to save the world instead of just being with herwhen she needs him.
Why does he always have to be the one to save them all? She never understood, and yet she does. For some reason, he just has to do this. She can't save him from it. She's stuck here. Waiting for him, again. Not even knowing what he is doing, though what she can guess and assume is enough. (But doesn't she deserve to at least know, after all she has put up with from him?)
She's still here. Right now she can't help him. And she hates that she can't even blame him, she can't even yell at him, she can't even tell him that she hates him even if it would be a lie. Because he's not here, and she's just stuck and she hates it, hates it, hates it.
It could've been so beautiful, so right. It still could, she supposes. If he'd come back. If he'll survive. Then, maybe. She could feel his soft touches again. Her skin misses him. Her hair misses his hot breath in it. She misses his hard glasses against her nose. Even when Neville or Luna takes it, her hand is lonely, cold.
Why did she have to fall in love with The Boy Who Lived of all people? Why couldn't she have chosen someone who wasn't so complicated, so damned, who wasn't Lord Voldemort's Undesirable Number One? Why couldn't she have simply chosen someone who's here? (But she didn't, it's too late, and she can't even hate him.)
IV. Tonight The Heartache's On Me – Dixie Chicks (Parvati Patil)
I had to turn my eyes away
My heart fell to the floor
She hates this year (and Parvati is supposed to be a happy person, who doesn't hate, but this year, she hates a lot). She can't stand watching Lavender smile more genuinely than she has in weeks when Seamus takes her hand, and she has to looks away as Padma leans her tear-streaked and bruised cheek against Terry's shoulder.
They have their people, and Parvati should be happy for them. She is a kind person, and she should be glad that they have others to take care of them, so that she gets a break now and then, and so that they can support her. But their comforting words about how they're sure that Dean will come back and that she will, somehow, manage until then just aren't very believable when it's so damn obvious how much they're depending on their damn boyfriends.
"Hey." It's Seamus's voice. "You okay there, Parvati?"
"Of course." She hurries a smile, averting her eyes from Lavender's and Padma's awakened concern as they recognize the high pitch in her voice. "I'm fine. I just need to get some air."
She almost wishes that they wouldn't follow her. They do, respectfully leaving their damn boyfriends behind. But she almost wishes they'd just for once leave her to her bitter tears. Almost.
V. Haunted – Kelly Clarkson (Terry Boot)
I can't survive unless I know you're with me
I wish I couldn't feel at all
Let me be numb, I'm starting to fall
(You were smiling)
He hates this. He can't stand it – can't even fathom it. If only Padma was here. Her touch might make him understand that this isn't… he's not even sure what it isn't, because this might be the very worst.
Terry doesn't know anything, except that her hand isn't here, because her hand is with Parvati, who's breaking, because Lavender, the ever-smiling, ever-laughing Lavender is possibly dying, right now (he found her, he saw the blood, it was too much, way too much).
"Terry." Anthony doesn't have to say anything more. They share a look and there's nothing else. Terry bites down on his lip so hard that he's sure he would've tasted blood if he'd have been able to feel anything at all.
They're three. Always three. Brothers.
Now he wishes he could numb the feelings away again, and the sounds, because something isn't right with Anthony's breathing. And seeing is the worst, because in front of him lies Michael, their brother, and he's white now, still – almost – and Terry found him too, saw him get hit by some kind of curse, by some damn Death Eater.
Michael was grinning, saying something about didn't he wish Padma could see him now (Terry had just shot an exceptionally good hex at two oncoming Death Eaters). There was a light, and then he was fading, something in his eyes. Terry ran, and he was holding him up, and Michael's eyelids were dropping, and he was getting heavier and Terry had to get them away, somehow. Somehow they were safe and Anthony arrived, questioning what had happened and he had to explain even if he doesn't know anything and Michael was smiling and now he's lying there and he's breathing but only barely Anthony has put his head in his hands and Terry just wants (needs) them to be three again.
VI. Easy Silence – Dixie Chicks (Harry Potter)
Children lose their youth too soon, watching war made us immune
But I just wanna hold onto the easy silence that you make for me
It's okay when there's nothing more to say to me
The peace and quiet you create for me
And the way you keep the world at bay for me, the way you keep the world at bay
He hates that he can't speak. He should be saying a million things, thanking them – but it'll never be enough.
"I'm sorry," he whispers hoarsely.
"Don't, mate," Ron interrupts him, hollowly, but firmly. Hermione shakes her head, her hand on Ron's, her eyes red. "Just don't."
Harry wants to say something else. But Ron's eyes meet his, silently, and they hold everything he needs to know. Everything he can't say. Ron knows. They both do.
He nods slowly. They nod back.
They don't need to say anything. The three of them just sit there, quietly, staring into the fire, occasionally meeting each other's eyes. There's nothing more to say. They're still here. Fred isn't. But they are. And it's over now. It's finally over. They're not children or even young anymore. They're not okay, but they are still here. And they'll get through this, somehow, together.
VII. Take A Chance On Me – Mamma Mia Soundtrack (Hannah Abbott)
If you need me, let me know, I'm gonna be around
If you've got no place to go, if you're feeling down
If you're all alone and the pretty birds have flown
Honey, I'm still free, take a chance on me
She hates seeing him like this. Neville's absentmindedly fingering the large glass of Firewhiskey in front of him. Hannah sighs. She's going to do this. She has to try. After all he's done for her, she has to at least make an attempt to do something back.
She greets him as lightly as she can manage.
He looks up, his eyes dull, but – is she imagining the way they brighten, only slightly, as she sits down next to him? She asks him in a would-be casual voice if he's been helping out at Hogwarts lately (she knows he hasn't either, Susan has told her). He mutters something about being busy, and she sees his forehead reddening slightly.
"Me either," she confesses quietly, and his eyes are curious in hers now. "I… can't. You too still have nightmares about that night?"
Did those words just come out of her mouth? To him? To Neville, who she barely knows, but has been admiring from afar for so long, fancying the whole previous year?
He nods, but looks surprised himself, both at her bluntness and his own unrestrained honesty.
"Me too," she whispers, trying to make him feel less uncomfortable, and suddenly her hand is on his and he looks up and there's surprise mixed with something that might be hope in there. Maybe.
For the rest of the night, she makes sure to change the subject every time he might get the idea in his head to order another drink. And she actually falls asleep that night, the remembrance of his small grin as she asked him if he'd like to meet up again some time fresh in her memory.
The next morning, Hannah doesn't mind waking up, because she'll get to tell Susan about Neville, and she'll see him again soon and maybe…
A/N: I might continue this, I might not. (Your opinions matter there, too.) I'm also working on the updates for both Things and Battle of Hogwarts: Postscript at the moment, and they both should be up within the next couple of days, I hope.