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Ollivander had long since stopped trying to figure out what time it was. The poor girl must be very tired, though, regardless of the time.

“There’s a camp bed a few paces to your left, and a blanket. Get some sleep.”

“Thank you,” she said, “but what about you?”

“I’ve my own spot in the other corner,” he lied. “Rest now. Nothing down here will harm you tonight, and I’ll wake you when it’s morning.”

“Good night, though I suppose it’s not really all that good,” she said, and he heard the creaking of the hinges as she lay down.

Morning came. Daylight and night were the only things that changed in this place, and even those were uncertain with weather. Meals did come, usually Apparating directly from the Malfoy kitchen, but not with any regularity. He had realized long ago that House-elves were the only beings that could break the tight security on the cellar. Any attempts he made were completely useless.

Ollivander had slept on a pile of old sheets in the corner, but he’d still slept soundly out of habit. He’d found that he never knew when his sleep might be interrupted by another round of questioning.

The gray light of dawn made the blackness of the cellar less dense, and he could just make out Luna’s sleeping form on the camp bed, a tangle of blonde hair and blankets. She was still, and for her sake he hoped she was dreaming of somewhere different, something good. Sometimes dreams had been his only escape here, but now even that seemed to be ebbing away. Last night, though, he’d dreamed of a wood, green and gold in the sunlight, where the trees practically hummed with magic. It had felt hopeful, but waking brought reality and a hungry belly.

“Good morning, Mr. Ollivander,” Luna said a few minutes later, her face still turned to the stone wall.

“Morning,” he said. “Did you sleep well?”

“Not well exactly, but I slept,” she said, stretching stiffly. “I hate to ask, but do you think that we might get some breakfast?”

“That’s hard to say,” Ollivander said. “We may, or we may not.”

Luna sat up, and her large eyes reflected in the dim light.

“I don’t think they want to starve us,” Luna said reasonably. “I’m being held as a sort of hostage, I think. I wouldn’t be much use dead.”

Her words had lacked any hint of fear. The Death Eaters thrived on making their victims terrified, but this girl seemed somehow beyond that sort of thing. At least he hoped so. The few who had been here with him and left hadn’t gone home, and he held very little hope that their deaths had been swift. If she was right, though, then there was a chance she might leave here alive. He had no such hope for himself, mainly because of his secret, something he had told no one and refrained from even thinking as much as he could.

By now Luna had stood up and was looking carefully at her new surroundings, as much of them as she could see. Oddly, her expression was more one of curiosity than despair. There wasn’t much at all to the cellar, only a long, stone rectangle without much variation except for the uneven flooring and a few random bits of old or broken furniture.

“There’s something strange about this place,” she said, more to herself than to him, but sound carried here.

“What do you mean?” Ollivander asked.

“I’m not sure yet,” she said, continuing her exploration. “It’s like something’s missing.”

Ollivander considered a long list of all the possible missing things: freedom, light, air, comfort, color, an unlocked door, hope, warmth. Until very recently, companionship would have been another one, but unbelievably this morning he had not awakened to that problem. That was at least something, but he immediately felt guilty for drawing a modicum of comfort from this girl’s capture.

“You might be feeling the anti-escape charms,” Ollivader ventured. “Apparition isn’t possible down here. They’ve made certain of that.”

“That could be it,” Luna said uncertainly. “Yes, it does feel like I’m bound up somehow. But there’s something else.”

“I believe you,” Ollivander said. “A great many things are missing here.”

Luna seemed to be concentrating hard, eyes closed and head tipped to one side as though she were trying to hear something.

“I don’t like this place,” she finally said, and there was a break in her voice, the first sign she had shown of really sorrow. “I’d thought, perhaps, it might be Dementors, but there aren’t any here. Wouldn’t you think this would be the perfect spot for them?”

“Yes, now you mention it,” Ollivander said. “I’d never thought of that before, though it seems obvious now.”

Dementors had been breeding like mad since Voldemort’s return. Places that typically might spawn them, like prisons, cemeteries, or places associated with horrible tragedies, had always been prone to their chilling presence, but now things were so muddled that one couldn’t stroll through St James’s Park at midday without the possibility of one lurking in the shadows. In retrospect, that none had darkened the cellar of Malfoy Manor struck Ollivander not simply as bizarre but nearly impossible.

“Something must be keeping them out,” Luna said.

“And keeping them from coming into being in the first place,” Ollivander said. “How odd.”

“You haven’t been conjuring a Patronus without a wand down here, have you?” Luna asked, looking impressed at the mere idea.

Ollivander gave her a half-hearted smile.

“No. I couldn’t produce one even at the best of times,” he said, rather embarrassed. “All I got was glowing vapor, and even that wasn’t certain.”

“That’s nothing strange. Most wizards never have one. I’m sure I wouldn’t have been able to do it if Harry hadn’t taught us all so well,” Luna said kindly. “Mine’s a hare.”

“You can produce a Patronus?” Ollivander said, and it was his turn to be impressed.


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