Hugs were shared. Promises to visit were made. Bets were placed on whether or not James would be the next Triwizard Champion. Goodbyes were said.
Teddy didn't know if he should feel guilty or not, but he was really quite ready to go. After the hospital, there had been such an endless string of reporters and photographers that the judges had set up protective charms on the compound so the students could have some peace. He was ready to be back in Cambridge with his grandmum.
"I'll see you in a few months, then?" he asked Kyo as the families lined up for Portkeys.
"Yes. Minister Shaklebolt said I can start my internship as soon as I'm ready."
"Brilliant! I…er…I'm getting an apartment in London next month. Gringotts will have me training for the next year before I'm a licensed curse-breaker. You could stay with me… if you want."
Kyo smiled and kissed him. "We'll see."
The hand bell on the table in front of them began to glow. Teddy hugged Kyo one last time. "See you."
"I'll write to you." Kyo picked up the bell and was gone a moment later.
Teddy made his way back through the crowd to another line. Harry and James were waiting for him there. "Ready?" he asked them.
"When you are," Harry said, nodding to the glowing binder.
"Teddy!" James yelled, then started coughing.
Teddy walked through the kitchen, nibbling on his sandwich. He found James and Harry in his living room, both covered in soot. "Morning!" he said brightly.
"Nice hair," Harry said, grinning.
"Green rocks. Let's go get James ready for Hogwarts."
They Flooed to the Leaky Cauldron, where they met up with Ginny. All eyes turned to their party as they made their way to the entrance to Diagon Alley.
"Maybe I should disguise myself," Teddy suggested.
"They'll know it's you anyway," James said, shrugging. "You're always with us."
"He's got a point," Ginny said, ruffling Teddy's green hair. "Just ignore it."
Easier said than done. Kids in front of the Quidditch shop wanted his autograph. Shop owners tried to get him to buy things he didn't even need. Reporters were everywhere…. By lunch, he was ready to kick the next person who even mentioned the Tournament.
"Teddy! Teddy Lupin!"
With a deep sigh, he turned to see another reporter heading his way. "Yes?"
"I just wanted to congratulate you on winning the Tournament," the man said. "Asa Willington, from Wizard Beat. Do you have a minute? Maybe we could have a word?"
Teddy saw Harry about to say something and held up his hand. "It's alright, Harry. Go on. I'll catch you up."
"Are you sure?" Harry asked.
"Positive." There was only one way to make the madness end. He had to give an interview. "Shall we go to Fortescue's, Mr. Willington? They have a great lemon cheesecake ice cream."
"Sure, son!" Willington agreed.
As they walked, Teddy put everything on the table for the reporter. "Look," he said. "Up until now, I've dodged the lot of you. I needed time to recover, you see."
"Understandable, my boy. Quite understandable."
"But it's not like I can run from the news forever. And since Matteo's still getting grief, I figure it makes sense that I am too. So here's my proposal," he said, stopping in front of the ice cream shop. "We go in here, get a snack, and I'll tell you everything you want to know. You can ask me about anything in the Tournament or about what's up with me now. Anything. I won't hold back. But you have to promise me something."
"What's that?" Willington asked.
"You have to find Matteo, Ayira, Jessie, Owen and Kyo, and run an article on them as well. And you can't bug Matteo about the third Task. I've forgiven him—we have an understanding. But they're all doing great things now. They all worked really hard during their own Tournaments. They deserve some press. And don't put this into the article," he added. "I'm sick of people making me out to be some sort of saint. Frankly, I'm tired of the attention. They can and should have the spotlight."
"Sounds like a plan to me," Willington said with a smile. "Shall we go inside?"
Teddy nodded and led the way. He was ready to get it all out. The Triwizard Tournament would finally be behind him.