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Fic: Of Chainsaws and Chisels

Title: Of Chainsaws and Chisels—A Winter Mini-Adventure
(Or, How Harry Was Somehow Coerced Into Risking Frostbite To/Amputation Of Some Very Important Bits Because He Made Very Bad Decisions. Or Was Mental. Either One.)
Rating: G
Word Count: 2,236
Genre: Gen fic
Characters: Harry, Luna

Summary: Whenever Luna had another of her mad ideas, it seemed as though Harry was the one always getting sucked in along with her. He really wasn’t sure how that kept happening. Yet, here he was, holding an ice pick and hoping Luna didn’t carve off something vital to his person before the frostbite had a chance to set in...


Disclaimer: All Harry Potter characters, objects, settings, and plots are the property of J.K. Rowling. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise associated with Harry potter. No copyright infringement is intended and no money is being made from the writing of this fanfiction.

A/N: Written for this Year’s mini_fest, for 2011’s prompt #149. The original can be found here.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Harry honestly didn’t know how he’d let himself be talked into this.

He shivered in the icy mountain air, arms wrapped around himself, brusquely rubbing his hands up and down in an effort to keep warm. Recognizing his actions as an attempt to stall, Harry sighed, and with only a slight hesitation, picked up an ice pick. Clenching his fist around the handle, Harry absently decided that maybe he needed to reconsider his life choices.

I mean really, he thought, adjusting his grip on the ice pick nervously, I spent a good chunk of my formative years hunting down dark, darker, and the darkest of dark wizards. I thought it was a good idea to entertain deadly three headed dogs. I rode a dragon. I tricked a goblin. Clearly there’s something wrong with my decision-making paradigm. Or I’m a mad, mad man.

Harry had done a lot of odd things in his life, but it was possible that this took the cake.

Taking a deep breath, Harry raised the ice pick over his head. He counted slowly to three while eyeing his target carefully, intent on bringing the pick down in just the right spot and with just enough force so that he only had to do this once.

When he was ready, Harry let his arm come down hard. Or he started to, anyway. He’d moved enough that he had to do an odd shuffling hop thing to keep his balance when a loud, sudden “Harry, wait!” was shouted nearby.

When he was sure he wasn’t going to fall, Harry turned to face the source of the shout and had to smile at the pink-cheeked blond hurrying toward him.

“Safety first!” the blond said brightly, sliding a pair of safety goggles onto his face. She fumbled a bit, having to maneuver one-handed around the bulk of his fur lined parka hood and the wool knit beanie he was wearing beneath it. Her other hand clutched possessively at her shiny new chainsaw, which she had been loath to take her hands off of since the day she’d bought it. Between the chainsaw, the neon pink parka (with matching boots), and the purple and orange floral patterned snow pants, sweet, elfin Luna Lovegood was the most adorably frightening thing he’d ever seen.

And this is why Harry doubted his decision-making abilities. His instinct at the sight of Luna with a chainsaw had been to laugh. All of their other friends had backed very far away, or cowered behind the nearest shed (Ron) or leafy bush (Luna’s husband, Neville). Harry, on the other hand, had run toward the giant Muggle power tool being toted about by a very inexperienced, very unMuggle witch.

Harry was at least beginning to understand why he was always the one accompanying Luna on these crazy adventures.

It was supposed to be a Muggle ice sculpting competition for amateurs, but Luna never could do anything half way. Never mind that she barely knew what a chainsaw was, Luna ran out and procured one (from somewhere) almost before the ink was dry on their registration sheet. A bright orange chainsaw. Which she then proceeded to decorate. With Muggle stickers, of all things. Harry hadn’t watched a Disney movie in a long time, but he was pretty sure that was Tinkerbell hovering on the carburetor box just above the rear handle. She’d also painted a variety of brightly coloured flora all along the bottom, and even stroked a few wild curly-cues up along the guide bar.

Harry didn’t even remember agreeing to this particular madness, but as he brought the ice pick down on the (absolutely huge, what was Luna thinking) block of ice and listened to Luna cackling as she got the chainsaw started, he couldn’t help the wild grin that spread across his face.

Although he might fear for his life, and he might be going completely mental, he always had fun when he gave in and went along with whatever it was Luna was up to.

By the time the first hour had gone by, Harry’s arms were getting tired from the constant rise and fall of the ice pick, and then from the vibrations of the chainsaw when Luna couldn’t take it anymore and passed it over to him to finish up. Despite the rising weariness, they had a basic shape taking form. It wasn’t a shape Harry recognized in any way, but it was a shape. He supposed that was something.

“One more, Harry,” Luna called, her General Lovegood voice (as Harry had privately termed it over the course of the last hour) surprisingly authoritative, if a teensy bit scary. “Right here!” she commanded, pointing. “Just take that sharp edge off there.”

Harry obeyed, revving the chainsaw as he swung it round. (As if the powerful, manly sound of it could obliterate the fact that he was, in fact, wielding a chainsaw covered in pink, purple, blue, and yellow flowers and happy little fairies.)

“Alright, Harry!” Luna chirped, waving her Day-Glo arms frantically above her head. “That’s perfect.” She grinned madly as he turned the chainsaw off and set it safely aside.

“Now,” she said, “the real work begins.” She cackled again as she produced a set of chisels and a heat gun, seemingly from thin air. He narrowed his eyes at her suspiciously—this was a Muggle competition, full of Muggle competitors and surrounded by (mostly) Muggle crowds; magic was a no-no—and Luna cackled once more in response.

Harry couldn’t decide if that meant she’d produced the items with magic, or was just that crazy-scary good. Then he decided he didn’t really want to know.

Harry picked up a chisel and raised a questioning brow at his friend. Luna rubbed her gloved hands together and began shouting instructions again. Harry followed them without question, mostly because he still didn’t have a clue what they were carving. Luna darted in and out around him as he worked, chattering brightly between commands and waving the heat gun in seemingly random patterns.

(The heat gun, he noticed with amusement, was decorated with miniature versions of as many beasts from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them as was possible to squeeze on to a tool that small.)

It was hard work, keeping up with Luna. He suspected it would be hard work anyway, but Luna’s carving style was almost scatterbrained. “Chip this away, Harry,” she’d say, then run around to the opposite side of the sculpture to issue a command about making “a dip just here, Harry, just this deep,” and then racing back around again, brandishing the heat gun while shouting at him to take two steps to her right and carve one and a quarter inches of ice away from a corner. It was tiring, running after her, chopping away at the ice, and then running some more. Harry tried protesting at first, but Luna just laughed and told him that they had to carve it the way it wanted to be carved.

“As the baby dragon knows best how to emerge from its egg, Harry, so too does our ice sculpture know best how to take shape.” Luna maintained a sage expression for several seconds before issuing another command about where to cut.

Harry took comfort in the fact that Luna was even more mental than he was and surrendered himself to Luna’s whims. And despite his protests, Harry was having a lot of fun. He spent almost as much time gasping for breath because of laughing too hard as he did because he was racing around after his tireless friend.

Sometime later—Harry wasn’t sure how much later because his whole life had narrowed down to the chisel and the ice—Luna stepped back with a happy squeal. Harry assumed this meant he could drop the chisel. Luna shot him an knowing glance when he sighed in relief and stretched sore muscles, then turned back to stare thoughtfully at their sculpture. Before Harry really had a chance to take it in, Luna was back, crowding them both closer to the ice and shoving a grinder into his hands.

“Make all the rough bits smooth and shiny, Harry,” she told him, giggling (at the power of bossing an obedient Harry about, he suspected).

Harry made a face at her, which made her laugh outright, and then set to work again. He noticed Luna picking through the chisels before moving around the sculpture to the side Harry understood to be the front. He knew she was working on adding in smaller details, so he left her to it and focused on finding and fixing all the little imperfections.

Harry didn’t see Luna again, except from the corner of his eye, until a Muggle with an air horn signaled then end of the competition.

Harry wiped snow off his face for the nth time and removed his safety glasses, tossing them down in the pile of their equipment that had accumulated over the last several hours. Only then did Harry step back to really look at the masterpiece they’d created.

“Oh, Harry, isn’t it marvelous?” Luna cried, throwing her arms around him.

“Erm,” said Harry.

“Erm?” Luna looked up at him and tilted her head to one side. She stared at him for a long moment in that unnervingly knowing way she had and then blinked. “You don’t know what it is, do you?”

“Well,” he said, taking a deep, bracing breath “I know the bit on the right is a unicorn.” And a good one too. Luna was a very talented artist. “But...”

“But?”

When he looked down at her, her expression was serious, but the wide, dreamy eyes held a spark of mischief.

“But I haven’t a clue what the other bit is,” he admitted. “It’s obvious that it’s fighting with the unicorn, and the horn there looks a bit like an Erumpent horn, although that’s the oddest looking Erumpent I’ve ever seen and—” Harry cut himself off when Luna burst into laughter.

“Oh, Harry,” she sighed when her hilarity subsided. “You could not be more wrong. It’s obviously a Crumple-Horned Snorcack, and he’s not fighting with the unicorn. They’re making a friendship pact.”

“Then why does his face look so angry?” Harry asked, tilting his head to examine the expressions Luna had chiseled in hopes that the new angle would help him see the bond of friendship forming between the two carved figures.

“Snorcack expressions are reversed. Their natural expression is one we would recognize as fury. They’re actually very mild-tempered when they look angry. You only really have to worry when they start to look happy.”

Harry arched an eyebrow at the blond. “Reversed expressions?”

Luna’s answering smile was enamoured. “Fascinating, isn’t it?”

“Huh.” Harry glanced around the big open space filled with ice sculptures, tools, and competitors, then turned back to his friend.

“Well, shall we head home?” he asked. “Tell our friends and family the good news?”

“What good news, Harry?”

“First, that neither of us lost any limbs today, which I consider a smashing success, and second, that we won the contest.”

“We can’t leave yet, silly. They haven’t actually scored the sculptures. We don’t know who’s won.”

“Luna. Look around. We definitely won. You do realize this was an amateur competition, right? If you were going to cheat, you should have gone a little easy. I think you overdid it a bit.”

Harry!” Luna sounded scandalized. “I am not a cheater.”

“No? Only this is really exceptional work for an amateur, Lu. And though I know you haven’t ever used any of this stuff before,” Harry motioned to their various ice sculpting tools, “you’re extremely proficient with a wand.”

“You did half the work!” she protested, laughing. “Where would I have hidden my wand that you wouldn’t have seen it?”

“That heat gun was suspicious. Before that, it was just a more lumpy block of ice.”

“I’m a Ravenclaw, Harry. I don’t need to cheat,” Luna sniffed, tilting her nose up just a little. But her eyes glinted mischievously.

“You’re a Ravenclaw, Lu. You strive for perfection.”

“I did not cheat. I am just talented.” Luna looked smug. “Art is a precious gift I give to the world, Harry Potter.”

Harry thought of the “art” Luna tended to enjoy creating, half of which was tongue-in-cheek, and snorted in laughter.

Luna elbowed him gently, pretending offense, but she was smiling, and her eyes were doing the Luna twinkly thing at him. “Try not to be so envious, Harry. Just because I’m an ice sculpting prodigy...”

“If being a prodigy means I have to wield tools covered in sparkly fairies and neon flora and fauna, I think I’ll pass.”

Luna laughed. “Should you ever become an ice sculpting prodigy like me, Harry, I shall only paint dragons and hinkypunks on your sculpting tools.”

Harry threw his head back and laughed. “Is that a promise?”

“Of course.”

“Alright then, Miss Prodigy,” Harry said, still chuckling a little, “since it is clear that we have won this little contest, please tell me why we are still standing out here in the cold.”

“Simple, Harry.” Luna grinned wickedly and pulled a flier from her coat pocket, pointing to the bold-print words at the bottom, surrounded by a dark star, which read “First prize: 1 year’s supply of Quality Street.”

“We’re waiting on the Muggle sweets.”

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