Platform 9 ¾
Friday, September 1, 2017
Not long after the red train and its sharp whistle had disappeared into the north, Draco Malfoy noticed something strange.
Another goodbye was taking place on Platform 9 ¾. Without fanfare and probably in secret, for this was a story that would sell out the Prophet.
Hermione Granger was still famous, after all.
He watched as she was pulled into a rough embrace by Ginny Potter. The two women whispered in each others' ears before Ginny gave Hermione an aggressive kiss on the cheek, released her and marched away without a backward glance.
Harry Potter approached her next, almost shyly. Their exchange was solemn and tender. They hardly said a word as he held her. When he walked away, he cast a concerned glance over his shoulder, and Hermione waved, a tear sliding down her cheek.
Finally, she turned to Ron Weasley, her husband. They thought they were alone.
Draco sat hidden on a bench in a shadowy alcove as he had since the Hogwarts Express had taken Scorpius away. He hadn't meant to spy, but he hadn't wanted to return to his tomb of a lonely house either. Now it was too late to Disapparate without ruining whatever moment Weasley and Granger were about to share.
Draco hadn't expected that moment to involve a canary.
One moment, the couple stared at each other, tense and uncertain. Then Weasley pulled out his wand and flicked it toward a discarded sweet wrapper scuttling across the ground. The trash turned into a bright yellow bird, which flew in circles around their heads and sang.
This meant something to Granger. Draco watched surprise and joy light up her face as she laughed. Then, in an unsophisticated display of emotion (by Slytherin standards) he saw her happiness disintegrate into longing, sorrow and pain. When she launched herself at Weasley, he caught her, lifting her off her feet. She sobbed against his shoulder. He swayed them gently, side to side, and crooned soft words.
So, after nineteen years together... divorce.
When they kissed, Draco knew. It was a last kiss, desperate and sad. He gazed at his polished shoes, remembering the last time he'd kissed Astoria. He didn't look up until he heard footsteps departing.
Hermione stood alone now, a sweet wrapper at her feet.
When the blue train arrived a half hour later, she boarded it without a single piece of luggage. Draco followed her. There was no one waiting for him at home.