Luna Lovegood and the Chamber of Secrets - Part 7

by lsusr2 min read11th Dec 202018 comments

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They were in the hospital wing.

"Who are you?" Harry Potter said to Luna.

"You-Know-Who. Hiss hiss hiss," Luna said. She held fingers down from her mouth and swayed like a snake.

"This is Loony—" Hermione said, "Luna Lovegood. She created the BOY-WHO-LIVED GETS DRACO MALFOY PREGNANT headline the summer before last. She believes there exists an unobservable Platform Nine and One-Half concealed by powerful magics. She claims you and she adventured together without me."

"Do you have any evidence I trusted you before I lost my memory?" Harry asked.

Luna glanced at Hermione.

"All my secrets are hers as well," Harry said.

"I know your real name, that you're a Parselmouth and that you've operated the Mirror of Atlantis," said Luna.

"My real name isn't something I'd tell you so you must have worked it out yourself and therefore does not constitute evidence of my trusting you in the past. There are at least three people who know I'm a Parselmouth so it's not surprising the information leaked out. These are the same people who know I've operated the Mirror so the Mirror adds no bits of information. An enemy would be at least as likely as an ally to possess this information," said Harry, "Did we discover an ancient artifact or something?"

"We found the Lost Diadem of Ravenclaw together," Luna showed it to him.

"This crown proves little since you could easily retcon a story around it. On the other hand, there is information I would tell someone I trusted if I wanted to guarantee recognition in case of obliviation," said Harry, "Do you have the recognition code?"

Luna recognized the logic of someone whose priors outweighed the available evidence. She fled the room.


The Marauder's Map showed Luna how to climb on top of the Great Hall. She hugged a stone gargoyle at the edge. It guided her tears down into the Hogwarts courtyard.

"Not now, Wanda," Luna said, "I need to feel this."

Luna detected quiet behind her. She continued staring at the students mingling below.

"I do not intend to jump," Luna said.

"I do not intend to stop you," Lady Yue said.

They listened to the wind. They smelled the gentle scent of trees.

"How does one make friends?" Luna asked.

"That is Professor Lockhart's field of expertise," Lady Yue said.

"Do you have a spell for loneliness?" Luna asked.

"今夜鄜州月," Lady Yue sang from her teenage youth, "閨中只独看。遥憐小児女,未解憶長安。香霧雲鬟湿,清輝玉臂寒。何時倚虚幌,双照涙痕乾?"

《月夜》 Moon Night by Du Fu 杜甫

今夜鄜州月,

Tonight Fuzhou moon,

闺中只独看。

boudoir inside only alone see.

遥怜小儿女,

Distant tenderness small girl,

未解忆长安。

unsolved recall Chang'an.

香雾云鬟湿,

Scent fog cloud hair wet,

清辉玉臂寒。

clear splendor jade shoulder cold.

何时倚虚幌,

When lean empty window curtain,

双照泪痕干。

both shine tear stains dry.

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15 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 4:43 PM
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Am I the only one who feels like I'm only getting even numbered pages ? 

The pathing looks a bit like in the Manuscript found in Saragossa, only with fewer ghosts and threesomes.

I think I know what you mean (about even-numbered pages; I'm not familiar with Manuscript), but there isn't actually missing necessary information (unless you haven't read HPMoR, in which case you're definitely missing necessary information). I suppose what's missing is unnecessary information--each scene is stripped to its bare essentials.

I suppose what's missing is unnecessary information--each scene is stripped to its bare essentials.

Which, for what it's worth, I really like as a window to 'what life is like for Luna'.

Typos:

  • These are same people who know -> the same people
  • at least as likely as a ally -> an ally
  • It guided her tears to down into the Hogwarts courtyard. -> tears down into
  • They listened to wind. -> the wind
  • EDIT: Also, the Chinese characters in Lady Yue's last line don't correspond 1-for-1 to the translation:
    • 中只独看 vs 中只独看
    • 女 vs 遥
    • 未解憶長安 vs 未解忆长
    • 霧雲鬟湿 vs 香雾云鬟湿
    • 玉臂寒 vs 清玉臂寒
    • 双照乾? vs 双照干。

The first time we see the poem it's in traditional characters; the characters preceding the translation are simplified :)

Thanks. I fixed the typos.

Did you see my edit regarding the Chinese characters?

I think "small girl" should be "small children"; "tenderness" should probably be "feel pity"; "cloud hair" should probably be "hairbun"; "jade shoulder" should be "lady's arms" and "clear splendor" should be "bright light". After all, we are not writing out Fuzhou as "blessing prefecture". And I think "empty window curtain" should be "gauze curtains" (the air gaps between the gauze is where "empty" comes from)

"You and SHE adventured without me."

Unless the subject/object inversion is Hermione posing some kind of test I am too dull to recognize.

Fixed. Thanks.

I don't know what role this poem will play in the story, but since I didn't understand the translation here at all, I looked up a few professional translations of Moonlit Night by Du Fu: 1 & 2, 3.

EDIT: Also, apparently there's a Lady of Yue in Chinese history and mythology.

Thanks for those links! It actually makes me appreciate what lsusr is doing here more – those translations give me a better sense of the meaning and intention behind the poem, but lsusr's highly literal word-to-word translation gives me a better sense of how Chinese poetry is structured and how it feels to read it natively. That's actually really really cool, wow.

Also, not relevant, but one of those translations is by Vikram Seth, who was my mom's friend when they were both expats in China in the early 1980s. I always feel sort of warm when I see his work in the wild, even though I've never met him. 

Harry is a Parselmouth because he can speak Parseltongue. He's not a Parseltongue.

Fixed. Thanks.