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Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy, 75 Years of the Golden Couple

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Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy, 75 Years of the Golden Couple
‘Please, stop calling us that’
By Pippi Patil

“He was such a knobhead,” says Harry Potter, gazing fondly at his boyfriend of 75 years. “Utterly. Just a massive cock. Enough to give an entire generation penis envy.”

“Ah yes,” Draco takes a sip of tea.“Now remind me, did you come to that conclusion before or after you spent over a year following me around Hogwarts like a lovesick puppy?”

“Well, it was definitely around the time you climbed that tree but—” Harry’s next words are smothered by a flying cushion.

The ensuing scuffle overturns the tea table and we spend the next few minutes Vanishing crumbs. At one point I glance up see Harry planting a kiss on Draco’s flushed cheek and, once order has been restored, the two of them are sitting slightly closer together.

The sofa they’re perched on is the same ergonomic John Lewis two-seater my Dida has in her front room and,  for a moment,  the ordinariness of the situation makes it possible to forget that these are two of the most influential wizards in Magical Britain.

Every schoolchild is familiar with the legacy of The Boy Who Lived. The nationwide outpouring of joy and grief following the Battle of Hogwarts quickly coalesced into an annual day of remembrance. Yet, Harry James Potter turns 110 this month and, to hear him talk, he’s only just getting started.

This year alone, Harry has marched with climate change campaigners in protest against plans to mine underneath Stonehenge, co-sponsored a bill to pay reparations to the Hogwarts merpeople (“Do you have any idea what plonking a castle in the middle of the Lake did to their habitat?”) and became a trustee for the Magical Trans Youth Protection Society.

In contrast to this flurry of activity, Draco Malfoy’s public profile is practically low-key. As The Prophet’s longest serving columnist and a bestselling biographer, Draco’s risqué yet meticulously researched books have won multiple Muggle and Magical literary awards, including a recent nomination to the Lee Jordan Honour List for his service to the arts.

“Oh I really am terribly dull,” Draco assures me. “Messing around with ink and parchment while the Boy Saviour—” “Fuck off!” “Now, now dear” Draco brushes off Harry’s interruption and continues, grey eyes twinkling with mischief. “Harry really is an extraordinary man, all these causes and missions. It’s positively inspiring to see in a man of such advanced years.”

“You are two months older than me.” Harry points out.

“Yes, but I wear it better.” They smile at each other in silence, unconsciously recreating the candid snap which first brought their relationship to public attention. Recently voted one of the Magical world’s most influential photos of the century, it showed Draco and Harry seated in the Weasley family’s garden. Today there are certainly more wrinkles and slightly less hair on display, yet the playful affection between the two men still shines through.

Which brings us back to the reason I’ve been granted an interview. After 75 years of one-line press releases, privacy charms, press gagging orders and complete refusal to talk about their private lives, Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy are finally ready to open up about one of the greatest love stories the Magical world has ever witnessed.

“Please tell me you’re not going to use that line in your article?” Draco interrupts me. Um, yes? He opens his mouth to reply, only to be sharply jabbed in the ribs by Harry.

“Shut it, you. Let the woman do her job.” Harry raises his eyebrows and stares Draco into submission. Clearly this is something they’d discussed before I arrived, although their friends and family confirm that it’s not uncommon to feel out-of-the-loop when dealing with the pair.

“It was bad enough before the war, when they were just glaring at each other and throwing hexes,” explains Ron Weasley when I firecall him before the interview. “But during our 8th year, bloody hell.

You know Draco was the one who got Harry to grow his beard? Just said one day that it might suit Harry and within five minutes Harry was swearing off shaving charms and buying sodding beard oil.” He flails and nearly flips his own beard into the fire.

“Think we had maybe a fortnight of awkward silence and then ten months of the pair of them chumming around the Hufflepuff Common Room.”

Back at the Potter-Malfoy town house, I ask what it was like being sorted into the same house after seven years of rivalry. Did it bring them closer together?

“Yeah, a bit.” says Harry. “I mean, war changes people, doesn’t it? Most of the Ravenclaw 8th years ended up being re-sorted into Gryffindor — I think they were maybe a bit embarrassed that only Luna [Lovegood], Cho [Chang], and Anthony [Goldstein] could throw a decent hex without taking a trip to the library first.” Draco snorts. “All the Hufflepuffs were in either Ravenclaw or Gryffindor, the Gryffindors were mainly in Slytherin, and then it was me and all the Slytherins in Hufflepuff.”

So what did he think, when Draco was sorted into the same house?

“Well at first I was pissed off. He supported Voldemort, and now we’re supposed to be the same? No offense love,” he directs that last comment to Draco who shrugs and motions for Harry to continue.

“But then on the first night Professor Sprout sat us all down and explained that houses are about what you value, not who you are. The war had changed us, me and Draco, and we came back to Hogwarts valuing kindness and loyalty over valour and ambition. Draco being sorted into Hufflepuff was a sign that he had changed, you know?” It is the most eloquent Harry has been all day and he blinks rapidly as he sits back and presses his shoulder against Draco.

Reporters were kept away from Hogwarts during what became known as The Golden Trio’s year. Harry winces at the nickname as he confirms that the absence of media attention was a relief. Even after the 8th Year students graduated, Harry and Draco’s contemporaries have been notably reticent about speaking to the press and so very little is known about the immediate post-war years. Were they offered counselling?

“No,” Draco starts, his hand tight on Harry’s thigh. “In those days, the Magical world’s understanding of mental health extended as far as the doors to the Janus Thickey ward. We [the students] were terrified that we’d be pulled out of school and locked away if we spoke about our symptoms.” Symptoms? “PTSD.”

It’s not the first time Draco has spoken publicly about the magical world’s failure to understand and treat mental health issues. His second book — Mad, Bad and Sad: A History of Magical Folk and the Mind Healers from 1800 to the Present — included an interview with his own mother about her treatment for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder in the 1960s and how that impacted the treatment he received for the same condition as a child.

This is, however, the first time that Draco has spoken to the press about his own post-war experience. My surprise at his admission must show, as he quickly adopts what the his critics have dubbed the ‘Malfoy Mask’. Was this shared experience instrumental in their burgeoning friendship?

“Er, not really.” Harry shoots a rueful glance at Draco. “I didn’t really know what was going on, so I just thought he was being an arse.”

How did they get past that?

“Hate sex.” Hermione Granger joins my firecall with Ron; her partner for 91 years and her husband for nearly 8 weeks. I try to offer her my congratulations on their wedding but she dismisses the ceremony as “bureaucratic performance art” and eagerly returns to the topic of Harry and Draco’s schoolboy romance.

“Well they were the only 8th Year boys - men, I suppose - in Hufflepuff, you see and so all their lessons were together, they ate together, slept together...”

“At it like rabbits,” Ron chips in. “They’d have an argument about something stupid — who left a wheel of cheese in the shower or Quidditch salary caps — get rat-arsed, glare at each other for a bit and then disappear for half an hour. Nev once caught them at it in the library. Two stacks over from Madame Pince’s desk. Can you imagine?”

“Indeed.” Hermione’s tone is a little frosty and an awkward silence follows, during which Hermione’s eyebrows appear to be making a series of cutting remarks and Ron’s eyebrows offer sheepish apologies. Were they surprised by Harry and Draco’s relationship?

“A bit, Harry had been on-and-off with Ginny for a while so I guess we all expected them to have another crack at it once we were all back at Hogwarts. But then, Gin started seeing Luna.” Ron shrugs.

“Harry and Draco were good together.” Hermione chimes in. “Neither one of them was very happy that year but they seemed to enjoy being unhappy together.”

Later, when I ask Draco and Harry what they think Hermione meant, they exchange a series of looks remarkably similar to Ron and Hermione’s own silent communication.

“I suppose she was referring to my... our... rather fraught study and sleep cycles,” says Draco. “Most of us were falling behind with our schooling and as a result our evenings were devoured by homework and the weekends were spent either helping repair Hogwarts or using whatever booze we could scrounge up to obliterate and repress our collective memories of the war.”

“And by ‘scrounge up’ he means the best of the Malfoy cellars, which was shared responsibly among the students over 18.” Harry offers in a winsome, albeit completely disingenuous, voice.

So they were together? Boyfriends? “No,” the smile disappears from Draco’s face. “One of us,” his eyes flick to Harry, “was too busy planning the next 40 years of his life to even consider the idea of anything more than a brief dalliance.”

A brief dalliance that lasted for an entire school year?

“It wasn’t a dalliance,” says Harry, glaring at Draco. “It just wasn’t a forever-and-ever type deal.” Because of Ginny? “Yes, no. Look. Er. I was in love with Ginny —had been in love with Ginny for years. We were going to be together, have a home and a family and all those things I hadn’t had growing up—”

“All those things you could have had with me.” Draco interrupts.

“Well I didn’t know that you were the love of my life then, did I?” They glare at each other until I ask Draco if he was angry that Harry chose Ginny over him.

“Not at all,” Draco lies smoothly, adjusting his cuffs. “I was engaged to Astoria — a long standing agreement between our families, you understand — and without Harry and Ginny’s union, I would not have met James, Albus, and Lily.”

At the mention of his children, Harry visibly relaxes, highlighting just how tense he has been since Ginny was brought up. Their marriage lasted six years and it was another six years before the two of them were seen in public together.

Out of the three Potter children, James Sirius Potter is the only one to have cultivated a public image. In 2078, he made history as Europe’s highest scoring international Quidditch player and is currently still on the England reserve list. Never married, James announced his asexuality to the press at the end of his debut year and served on the Magical-Muggle LGBTQIA collaboration board.

Twenty years after his parent’s divorce, James was covertly recorded saying it was all down to “that anemic cocktrumpt, Draco”. Do they get on better now?

“The relationship is still a little strained,” Draco concedes. “It did improve when James adopted the twins [Layla and Tabitha Potter, conceived via artificial insemination in 2042], Harry and Ginny were both travelling for work and I was able to offer some support by babysitting.”

“They started calling him Daddy Draco and James was Daddy James,” Harry grins. “But honestly? Draco had nothing to do with my and Gin’s break-up and James knew it. He was recovering from a nasty bust-up on the field, had been benched for a few weeks, and was feeling punchy. Draco was an easy target because James thought no one would believe it.”

So the children didn’t know about Harry and Draco’s relationship at Hogwarts?

“Albus did—”

“Scorpius was well aware—”

Both fathers spoke at once, smiling proudly.

Albus Remus Potter is the most private of the Potter children, and followers of his academic career will hardly be surprised that he perceived the true nature of Harry’s feelings for Draco.

The unwilling subject of much press attention and media speculation throughout his rather troubled school years, Albus entered a Muggle rehabilitation facility the same month of his graduation from Hogwarts. There he began a Muggle degree in Ancient [Muggle] History and went on to win various other Muggle academic honours. Aside from returning to the Magical world to change his middle name from Severus to Remus, Albus has remained a part of Muggle society.

I ask Harry how he felt when his son apparently rejected the Magical world Harry sacrificed so much to save.

“Bloody proud,” he snaps. “I know what it takes to enter a new world and make a home for yourself, especially for someone as quiet as Albus. I miss him, of course I do, but he needed a fresh start, without the Potter name hanging over him. And we still see him and Scorpius a fair bit.”

Scorpius Malfoy is both Albus’ oldest friend and Draco’s only son, putting him in a unique position to observe the two family’s attempts to merge.

“Would we call it a merge?” Scorpius asks when I firecall for a quote. “It felt a bit too dramatic for a merge, more like a, um, collision?” Right. And how was the collision? “Well, it was, um, it was a rather slow-moving collision. Dad had been moping over Harry for a while but it wasn’t until they started working together on The Foundation that he started coming home, um, smiling.”

“I was not moping,” says Draco. “I was busy.”

“Busy?” Harry asks.

“Yes, Potter. Busy. I was... Well, you know. Managing the Malfoy Estate and... And, you know, courting Astoria.”

“Yeah but that took, what? An hour of your day? Astoria always fancied him,” Harry tells me. “She was all about the werewolf rights, even before the war, and after she recruited Draco into campaigning with her, she used to organise all these late night planning meetings for the two of them.”

“Which is exactly what I was busy doing while you and Ginny galloped off into your heteronormative haven.”

Harry snorts and shakes his head but does not press the issue. Considering that the two men lost touch after they graduated, it is plausible that Harry genuinely had not known the details of Draco’s engagement.

“Of course he bloody knew!” Pansy Parkinson is next on my list of pre-interview firecalls and proves to be just as brilliantly caustic in person as her many biographers imply. “Potter always knew what Draco was up to. He was the one who told me that they were engaged, and I was Astoria’s sodding maid of honour.” When I bring this up both men laugh, although Draco’s laugh is maybe louder than Harry’s.

“Look,” Harry leans forward again, green eyes earnest behind slightly crooked glasses, “Ginny and Astoria were both amazing women, completely independently and in spite of me and this tosser.” He cocks a thumb back at Draco. “It wasn’t... there was nothing going on. Between us. Not til after.”

Harry has always been protective of Ginny Weasley, international Quidditch star and award-winning sports writer. He made headlines for hexing a reporter on the steps of the Wizengamot less than 30 minutes after the couple’s divorce was finalised.

“That maggot,” Harry grunts when I remind him. “Asked if Ginny was cheating on me, right in front of Gin’s mum.” And was she? The three of us freeze and I start frantically regretting the question until Draco laughs and leans forward to offer me another biscuit.

“No,” he says, rather as if he were talking to a badly behaved Crup. “Although she might as well have been. The way she and Luna mooned over each other. Ha! Mooned, did you hear that?” he turns to Harry, who stares back at him, apparently caught between irritation and adoration.

“Right then,” with a shake of his head, Harry returns to the original question. “No, she wasn’t cheating on me, she was still in love with Luna and... and... You know I’ve, er, I’ve always felt lucky that Ginny put her career on hold the way she did, to, you know, build a life. With me.”

He stops and blinks rapidly; Ginny’s death last year left Ron as the last surviving Potter Era Weasley. When Ginny was moved to palliative care Harry visited the hospital to say goodbye, only for a hoard of photographers to swarm the building. Despite many pleas for privacy, the couple’s daughter and granddaughters were eventually forced to cast a shield spell strong enough to take out three blocks of Magical London.

It was an impressive display of power from the Potter child that Wizengamot gossips have long suspected to have inherited her father’s magical strength. Lily Luna Longbottom followed her brother into academia, although she stayed closer to her roots by becoming Hogwarts’ Divination Professor.

“Bit of a weird one, that.” Harry scratches the back of his head with the tip of his wand. “Lil’s mum and I couldn’t stand all that crystal ball nonsense. Even after all the guff Professor Trelawney used to spout was proved right.” And now? “Well,” he blinks. “There’s clearly something in it.”

It’s the closest Harry has ever come to public endorsing Lily’s career, a stance that has caused much friction over the years. Knowing that the subject was likely to come up, I had already used my pre-interview firecall with Scorpius to ask for his insight on the rather fraught father-daughter relationship.

“Oh, ah, well they’re both too similar for their own good,” Scorpius said. “Everyone used to think Al had a temper but Lily is the one you need to watch out for. When she told Harry that she was majoring in Divination, they both got so furious that Granny Weasley’s attic ghoul moved into the shed for a fortnight. Then she had the girls and, well...”

‘The girls’ are Lily’s nine daughters. Was Harry surprised at Lily’s passion for motherhood?

“‘Course not. Look at her great-granny [Molly Weasley], and I reckon my parents would have had more kids. You know, if they’d had time. I know I would have.” Does he regret the early breakup of his marriage to Ginny, I ask.

“Oh, no. No, no. I knew she loved Luna,” Harry reaches blindly behind him to grasp Draco’s hand. “We were very alike, Gin and me. It’s why we worked together, how we managed to have all those bloody amazing kids. I knew she wouldn’t leave me, but, um, I loved her. I loved her and I wanted the best for her, she was my... my best friend...”

And did Draco feel the same way about Asotira?

“Of course.” Draco reaches forward and draws Harry back. They settle with Draco’s arm around Harry’s shoulders, as Draco tells me about the early years of his marriage.

“Never a great love story, you understand, although we were utterly delighted with each other. No one has ever made me laugh the way she does. Back then it was called ‘friends with benefits’ but Tasie [Anastasia Greengrass] has banned me from using that phrase about her great-grandmother.” He grins.

How soon after Harry and Draco’s respective divorces did they fall in love? “It was rather more like we fell in lust.” Draco confides, as Harry groans and covers his own face, mumbling “stop it”.

Despite their advanced years, it’s easy to see why this pair of silver haired great-grandfathers were once considered two of Magical Britain’s most desirable bachelors. Neither looks a day over 85 and their weekly Quidditch games keep them both active, with Harry’s salt-and-pepper hair and beard nearly as thick and wind-blown as they were during his school days.

Draco is particularly well-preserved, a successful hair transplant in the 2030’s helped stop his retreating hairline in it’s tracks and his pale skin glows in the afternoon sunshine. When I ask what his secret is Harry jumps in with a joke about anti-ageing potions (“he’s got enough to create another Philosopher's Stone in the bathroom cupboard”) and Draco looks suitably smug.

“He only wants me for my legs,” explains Draco, Harry snorts but remains quiet. “My legs and my money. That sounds rather ghastly, doesn’t it? What I mean is that by the time we were both divorced we were also completely embroiled in The Foundation.”

The Magical World’s Foundation to Fight Intolerance and Hate Speech, a.k.a. The Foundation is such an integral part of our society that it is hard to believe that it started out as a Harry Potter pipedream, funded only by a legacy from the Albus Dumbledore estate and the sale of Malfoy Manor.

“Oh I couldn’t wait to get rid of the place,” says Draco. “Sunk the money from the sale into projects my father would have hated — that was the main criteria — and when Harry came along talking about support groups for the families of Muggleborns and training Squibs as ambassadors? Well, let’s just say it was an easy decision to make.”

“Bollocks was it.” Harry appears to have recovered from his boyfriend’s teasing. “Nothing about that was easy. Draco had to fight six generations of Malfoy entails, just to get permission to sell the place, let alone give the money to charity. It took two years to get the Wizengamot to agree to the scheme and even then, they threw everything they could at us.”

He continues, eyes bright as he describes late nights spent crafting funding proposals, working with pre existing support groups to make sure that the Foundation would be completely inclusive.

“That bloody Foundation,” Pansy sighs. “I barely saw Draco for a year after Potter got him mixed up in that blasted thing.”

What was Harry and Draco’s relationship like during that time? “Tentative. Draco may be a fool when it comes to Potter but even he could see that falling back into bed with the man would make him miserable in the long run. Plus Astoria and Draco were still together for a year after Potter’s divorce and Draco is loyal.”

What does she think changed? “Astoria falling for Millicent certainly didn’t help the marriage,” she guffawed. “No, no, I must be serious. Astoria was bored — the werewolves were starting to lead their own pressure groups and there wasn’t as much for her to do — then Millie came along with all those Veela discrimination lawsuits. Well. Astoria always adored a lost cause.”

Back with Harry and Draco, I ask Harry if news of the Malfoy divorce gave him hope.

“Er... yes?”

“He didn’t realise it had happened for at least six months,” says Draco, casting a withering glance towards Harry.

“I was busy. We were busy! The Foundation took up a lot of my time and...” Harry trails off as Draco sniffs and shifts towards the other side of the sofa.

“Not too busy to flirt with a married man.”

“You weren’t married.”

“As far as you were concerned I was.”

“He didn’t say anything,” Harry turns to me. “I kept asking how Astoria was and he’d say she was ‘fine’.” His imitation of Draco’s drawl is impeccable.

“I knew if I said anything you’d... we’d, hum, you know...” This time Draco trails off as Harry beams at him. “Oh stop it.”

“Don’t think I will.”

“We have company.”

“I’m just smiling at you, love.”

“Harry.”

“Draco.”

“I am terribly sorry about this.” With a visible effort, Draco turns his attention back to me. “Quick, ask him about the Foundation before he becomes even more revolting.” Happy to oblige, I ask what inspired Harry to start the Foundation. It’s as if a switch has been flipped.

“I just got sick of people saying all the right things while doing all the wrong things.” Harry earnestly explains. “We needed an independent body that wasn’t tainted by Fudge’s government and wouldn’t be prejudice towards those who found themselves on the wrong side of the war.”

The Foundation launched during the 4th wave of The Ministry for Magic’s purity purges, when it was starting to feel like the only people morally qualified to hold public office were 17 year old Gryffindors. Harry criticised the purges and the pressure this placed on young graduates, both privately and in the press. Yet it wasn’t until The Foundation had been running for a few years that his concerns were taken seriously by the Magical public.

“Being called a scare-monger and an attention seeker wasn’t exactly a new experience,” Harry explains when I ask him about it. “The difference was that I finally had the money and time to make real changes, offer a bit of protection to people who needed it. That and this one wasn’t trying to undermine me.” He nods to Draco, who looks rather put out. “Being a bit older as well—”

“Beg pardon? ‘Wasn’t trying to undermine you’? My memory may be faltering in my old age, but I seem to recall taking a rather more active role in events.”

“Sorry love, I was just—”

“Indeed, in my dotage I appear to be hallucinating 18 hour days, endless pep talks, and countless nights spent camped out in the St. Mungo’s waiting rooms.”

Draco is referring to the legal suit filed against St. Mungo’s and The Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures by the Centaurs Welfare Association.

In the weeks following the Battle of Hogwarts stories began to emerge of injured Centaurs being turned away from the hospital and instructed by the RCMC to seek medical attention from the nearest vet. The CWA launched a legal suit on behalf of its members but the action spent 15 years being kicked around the Wizengamot with no resolution before an appeal landed in The Foundation postbox.

Harry and Draco immediately launched a high profile campaign — including a month long sit-in at the St Mungo’s waiting rooms. The campaign resulted in Centaurs formally being re-recognised as Magical Beings and reparations being paid to the surviving herd members. It was also the moment that the need for The Foundation became clear to the general public and requests for help came flooding in.

Finally, Harry and Draco were finally able to hire some full time staff and those long days and late night came to an end. It must have been very satisfying, to have all their hard work recognised?

“It was bloody awful,” says Harry, ruefully pulling his beard. “I’d got used to seeing Draco all the time and now we were back to a few hours here and there, usually talking about Niffler protection bills or the Epilepsy Education program.”

You missed him?

“Yeah. Somewhere between watching him threaten to hex the Head of St Mungo’s [Norman Nesquik] for refusing to treat a young Centaur's asthma and actually hexing the coffee machine when it broke in the middle of an all-nighter...” Harry pauses to gather his thoughts. “Well, I’d fallen back in love with him.”

Draco makes a small noise, attracting both my and Harry’s attention. “Forgive me,” he blushes, “I never tire of hearing those words.”

What did Harry do next? Once he realised he still had feelings for Draco?

“I tried to take him out.” Harry laughs. Tried? “Took me three different owls and turning up on Draco’s doorstep in the middle of a thunderstorm for him to realise that it wasn’t a work thing.”

“You make it sound as if I demanded a thunderstorm before agreeing to dinner,” Draco says.

“Come on,” Harry grins at Draco. “You have to admit that me turning up in a wet shirt didn’t exactly hurt.”

“As if there were any scenario where I was going to say ‘no’ to you,” Draco huffs, trying to hide his own grin. “I was momentarily confused about your motivations, not about my own feelings for you.”

“Well, good.”

“Indeed.”

They smile at each other before reluctantly dragging their attention back to me. We only have 15 minutes of the interview left and my questions stumble over each other as I hurry to ask how their families reacted to the news, did they plan to come out before they were outed by that leaked photo, do they plan to follow Ron and Hermione’s example by marrying late in life, or maybe introduce a third party to their relationship?

“Er...” Harry blinks. “Um...”

“What my delightfully tongue-tied boyfriend is trying to say is that no, we have no plans to marry or invite a third party,” Draco’s mouth twists with distaste, “into our relationship.”

“What were the other questions?” asks Harry.

Did they plan to go public?

“No. Well, a bit.” Harry grimaces. “We’d probably have used that photo to be honest. It was a nice one.” Noticing my glance towards the mantelpiece, he Accio’s the photo in question and hands it to me.

A higher resolution than the version made available to the Magical public via The Prophet , it also lasts a few seconds longer. Instead of stopping with Harry and Draco smiling at each other, it shows Harry half-turn towards the camera, an anxious expression crossing his face as he asks the photographer something.

Considering Draco’s position at The Prophet into account, they must have some idea who leaked the photo?

“Must we?” Draco’s smile is all teeth and it is clear that I will not be offered any more biscuits.

“Give over.” Harry admonishes him before turning to give me the slowest, most ostentatious wink I have ever seen. “ If we leaked the photo does it really matter now?”

Well. They did use the apparent breach in faith by The Prophet as a reason not to speak to the press about their relationship.

“Yes.” Draco examines his fingernails. “Terribly short-sighted of them to publish it without our permission.”

Yes. Terribly.

Moving on, because, honestly, what else could I do? I use the last few moments of our interview to ask if they were surprised by the general public’s reaction to the photograph.

“You mean how much they liked it?” Harry asks. “Maybe a bit. It’d been a few decades since the war but, yeah, people have longer memories and we expected Draco to have a bit more shit thrown at him. You know, the whole Death Eater... thing...”

Possibly because Harry and Draco have always been such divisive individuals, the outpouring of support in response to their relationship was as much appreciated as it was unexpected. Aside from a few detractors, the Magical world was quick to embrace the couple as a symbol of post-war cooperation and healing.

“As gratifying as that reaction was, I must admit that it is rather difficult to view one’s private relationship as the living embodiment of forgiveness when one of you—” Draco’s eyes cut to Harry, “—insists on trimming his beard in the conservatory.”

“One time.” Harry groans, tipping his head back to glare at the ceiling.

“Four times,” Draco informs me, ignoring Harry’s renewed groans. “The trimmings fell into my Mother’s favourite Venus Fly Trap, the poor thing took weeks to recover.” His mother or the plant? Draco freezes, his face twisting with outrage while Harry endures a vigorous coughing fit.

There is a rustle in the hall and my coat comes zooming into the frontroom, nearly upending the tea table on its way. Is the interview over, then?

“I think it might be,” Harry laughs, standing to show me out and cuffing Draco gently over the back of the head as he passes. Draco gives me a sarcastic wave goodbye. “Don’t worry about him,” Harry murmurs. “Terribly protective of his mum, but I think he likes you. You’ll probably get a nice box of fudge or something next week.”

Should I eat it?

“Well,” Harry’s eyes twinkle as he leans against the doorframe, “I’d say yes, but then I’ve always liked living dangerously. Especially when it comes to Draco Malfoy.”