It was finally done. My final year at Hogwarts had gone off without a hitch. It felt bittersweet, leaving a place I had always considered to be home. In the end, I think I knew I'd see it again sometime. It wasn't goodbye forever.
I looked around a crowded King's Cross, platform 9 ¾, seeing so many people I recognized, but not who I was looking for. There was a nervousness in my chest and stomach that was building. I'd had an unfortunately large breakfast, which wasn't helping.
"Calm down, Harry," Hermione said from behind me, a supportive arm on my shoulder. "Breathe. You'll be fine. He'll love you."
Also behind me, on my other side, was Ron. "Oi! Found them. Over there," he said, pointing to our far left.
I search the crowd there for a moment and found Tom, easily taller than most walking about the station. He had on his disguise, which gave him a darker complexion, dark-brown-almost-black short and straight hair, dark brown eyes, and bit of a thicker nose, and thick brows. He went by the name Sai Anand while he looked like this, and although I preferred his perfect brown hair and red eyes, this look suited him fine. It got the job done, but it always took me a second to realize it was him.
Hermione, Ron, and I all made our way there, slowly, pushing through the crowd. It took longer than it should have because Ron and Hermione were holding hands. It had taken all Ron had in him to admit his feelings to her a few months ago, and they'd been together since, just as I imagined they would. It wasn't weird or anything, although it did make me miss Tom.
Snape had let him visit, in disguise, twice a month or so. It wasn't just to visit me, because we had to have meetings to plan out laws and political platforms. But he always gave us at least a couple hours of extra time, just so we could see each other.
But he was here, now.
We finally arrived before Tom, and the crowd seemed to part around us to finally reveal the little boy whose hand he was holding.
Tom smiled softly as the boy began to bury his face into his robes.
"No need to be shy, Love. These are friends. The ones who sent you the special candy the other day."
The little boy peeked out from behind Tom's robes. He looked to be maybe four or five, but Tom had told me that he was six. His skin was peachy, with a slight redness growing on his ears. His light brown hair stuck out in tufts every which way, and I could just barely see a hint of one hazel eye looking at us with uncertainty.
Tom crouched, careful not to jostle the boy holding onto him. He pointed at us. "That is Hermione. That is Ron. And this is Harry. Harry is the one I told you about." Tom looked to us. "This is Nanda. He is a bit shy, but as we have discovered over the past few days, he has an affinity for sweets and frogs."
"Oh, then we should have sent a chocolate frog!" Ron said, smile on his freckled face as he looked at Nanda. "I hope the Sugar Quills were alright. We weren't sure what you'd like."
"His sister suggested Bernie Bott's Every Flavor Beans," Hermione added, her eyes lingering on Ron just a moment longer before she looked to Nanda. "They mean it when they say every flavor. There's even bad flavors, so we passed on that."
I crouched, trying to make my eyes level with his. "It's nice to meet you, Nanda." I pulled a small bag from my pocket. "I've got a pumpkin pasty. Would you like it?"
Nanda's face emerged further from behind Tom's robes and nodded. I un wrapped it and held it out to him, and he cautiously came to grab it. He was munching on it when a voice rang out from behind us.
"Ron! Minny! So good to see you!" Mrs. Weasley came over and hugged them both, Ginny in tow. She looked to me as if she was going to greet me, but then saw Nanda. "Oh, is that him? He looks just precious." She placed a hand over her heart with an adoring look. "Hello, Dear. I'm Mrs. Weasley. Ron's mum. I hear you like sweets?"
Nanda, still munching on his pasty, nodded.
"Well, then. You'll have to come over to my house, then. I'll made you whatever you want. How does that sound?"
Nanda smiled and nodded.
"Good! Good." She looked to Tom and I. "Beautiful family. Let me know when you're coming over. We're planning a big feast sometime next week to celebrate, but I'd like Nanda to meet the family, first, so he isn't so startled." She smiled and waved. "It's good to see you all. Congratulations."
We waved back. She turned and walked on, Ginny following suit, and Ron, too, after giving Hermione a kiss goodbye.
Hermione waved, as well. "I ought to find my parents. I'll see you all later."
"See ya," I said as she disappeared into the crowd. I stood and looked to Tom, who stood as well. "Hello, Love."
"Hello, Harry," Tom said, arms wrapping around me. "I've missed you."
I smiled. "I missed you, too." I gave him a kiss on the lips, not caring who saw. We weren't out yet, officially, but I couldn't think of a better way to show the world than with a picture of this moment: Tom picking me up from King's Cross, his new son with him, happily watching us with his mouth covered in sticky pumpkin and crumbs.
Tom chuckled as we parted. "People will talk."
I smiled. "Let them. I love you and I want everyone to know, not just my friends."
Tom picked up Nanda, crumbs and all. "We better get back home, hmm?" He said to Nanda. "I bet there's something that Harry would love you show you."
Nanda's eyes lit up and looked to me.
I smiled, my heart slowly melting with the sight of Nanda's unbridled joy. "Do you like leaves? Or maybe rolling down hills?"
Nanda nodded giddily.
"Then I have the perfect place we can go."
"Hold tight now," Tom said to Nanda.
We arrived in the sitting room, finally fixed with all new paintings and furniture that wasn't burnt. I looked to the window, seeing the grass glisten in the soon-to-be-summer sun. I pointed.
Nanda's face scrunched up in confusion. He pointed his now empty hands at the window, too. "But there's glass."
I took a step forward and pressed a hand against it. "Not for long." With the help of Tom's mind, I cast the spell that made my hand go right through the glass. I held out my hand to Nanda, who's face was surprised and excited all at once. "Are you ready?"
Nanda squirmed in Tom's grip, forcing Tom to release him. He landed and hurried to my side, grabbing my hand without hesitation. We stepped through together, feeling the sun begin to warm our faces at once. We landed in our little haven, surrounded by wildflowers. Nanda pulled his hand from my grip and ran about, carefree and happy.
At once, I knew it. It didn't matter if I was ready to be a father or not, because I was ready to love this child, to do anything for him. Just being in our home made him happy. It was all I ever hoped for as a child, and Tom as well. It was the best gift we ever could have given him.
Tom stood beside me, then, watching Nanda run about, too. He felt it too. We were a family now, in a place where we felt like we belonged. It wasn't an easy road, and it wouldn't ever be, but it was worth it. We could finally breathe. We could rest and trust and let ourselves be true.
We were home. And it was full of everything I loved in this world.