Chapter 45. Departure.
The next day, Mike was out of the hospital, prizes had been awarded, and Elizabeth, Mike and their parents sat in Potter's office. He and Elizabeth sat at one table, the gleaming Triwizard cup in front of them. Many names were engraved on it, the names of all Triwizard Tournament winners since the competition began. Most were dulled by time, but four were recent enough to gleam in bright gold letters.
"We did it," Mike said.
"Yeah..." She took his hand. He noticed that even that made Elizabeth's father uncomfortable. He wondered if Potter still had Mr. Malfoy's and his father's wands. He wouldn't be surprised if he had. His mother was probably the reason his father didn't start hurling hexes. What kept Malfoy...
"Dad, leave it." Elizabeth looked at her father, and he sat back in the chair after getting up.
Mike looked at his own father. "Yeah, Dad, leave it."
"Plagiarist," Elizabeth said.
"Borrower," he corrected. He lowered his voice to a whisper. "Are you sure about—"
Elizabeth nodded. "It's the only way to get enough time—"
"They won't like it—"
"I thought Gryffindors were supposed to be the brave ones."
"That's why I asked you if you had doubts."
"Oh, really? I—"
"Just what are you two up to?" his mother asked, looking from one to the other.
"Up to?" His father turned. Malfoy also listened in, but at this moment, Potter walked in.
"There's very little to say that hasn't been said already," he began. "Well done." He nodded at Mike and Elizabeth. "And I'm not just talking about the Tournament, by the way.
"Now," he continued, "you two came to me and asked me for a certain favor—"
"Nothing major, Draco."
"Harry," Ron started, "I've—"
"Ron, you worry too much. It's not like when we were at school, with Voldemort and Death Eaters running around."
"No maybes. As I was saying, I'm giving each of you a certain piece of advice concerning the issue that brought us all together in the first place. I'm talking, of course, about the prophecy. Mike, don't try to get the contents of the prophecy from Elizabeth. When you're ready—if you're ready," he said, noting a gasp on Elizabeth's part, "she'll tell you. On the other hand, Elizabeth, don't act like keeping the prophecy secret from Mike is the most important thing in the world, since it isn't. Preserving your love is more important." As he was saying this, he looked poignantly at Mike's parents. "You know that risk can pay off, so don't forget it now. And good luck."
With that, Potter took something out of his pocket and handed it to Elizabeth. She took Mike's hand.
"What's that?" Ron asked.
"Well, in the wizarding word, we call it a Portkey," Potter said.
As the motion swept him and Elizabeth, Mike glimpsed all three of their parents get up and shout at Potter, "YOU GAVE THEM WHAT?!"