This is it! The end. I do hope you've enjoyed this story. Thank you so much for reading.
1st September 2012
"Now, Scorpius, do you definitely have everything packed in your trunk?" Draco asked, for what was the seventeenth time. Scorpius rolled his eyes at his father, and Harry sniggered.
"Yes, Dad; once again, everything is packed. Except this. I didn't pack this." Scorpius was displaying his wand, a beautiful length of hawthorn and phoenix feather- a combination which had both shocked and delighted his fathers when he'd received it from Ollivanders for its combination of their wands. Harry still felt a jolt of pride every time he saw it.
"So you have your spell books, your robes, your-"
"If it's on Professor McGonagall's list, it's in my trunk." Harry could hear Scorpius' exasperation as he interrupted. "You packed it with me, Dad, so you should know what's in there. Now chill out, will you?"
If Harry hadn't have known how worried Draco was about Scorpius leaving their home and starting Hogwarts, he probably have rolled his eyes, too. But as it was, neither men had slept much the previous night. Draco's over-fussiness was his way of dealing with his anxiety. Whilst Draco had come on leaps and bounds in the last six years, his anxiety remained high; he and Harry and learnt together to deal with the panic attacks that Draco still suffered, despite coming off his potions for depression nearly five years' previously.
"Scorp, can I have a word please?" Harry asked, and Scorpius nodded and followed him into Harry's work study. Harry closed the door behind him.
"Are you OK, Harry?" Scorpius asked. Harry smiled.
"Yes, Scorp. There's just a couple of things I think you need to add to your trunk before you go." He opened the largest drawer on his desk and removed a large piece of shimmering fabric. Scorpius' eyes widened.
"Harry! That's your-"
"No, Scorp," Harry interrupted. "It's yours now." He held the Invisibility Cloak out for Scorpius, who reached out and took it, his eyes still huge and disbelieving. "It's always been passed from father to son. It was my dad's before it was mine, and his dad's before then, and, well, you get the idea, but for a thousand years it's been passed down. You're my son- it's time for you to have it."
Scorpius' bottom lip trembled for the merest of seconds, before he seemed to remember that eleven-year-old boys didn't cry. He settled instead for hugging Harry tightly.
"There's something else I want you to have, too," Harry continued. He opened another drawer and pulled out a seemingly sheet of blank paper. "Your dad doesn't even know about this. It's our little secret, okay?" Scorpius looked at the parchment, obviously confused. "Take your wand out, tap it, and say, 'I solemnly swear I'm up to no good'."
Scorpius looked at Harry, tapped the parchment with his wand, and repeated Harry's words. Harry looked on as Scorpius' face transformed from confused to delighted, as he realised what he had in his hands.
"Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs. The Marauders," Harry said. "Prongs was my dad. Moony was Teddy's, and Padfoot was Sirius. They made this Map. So you need to share this with Teddy. But I will be most disappointed if the pair of you are not back at Christmas filled with tales of near-misses with Peeves and Filch's cat. To wipe it tap it again and say, 'mischief managed', OK?" Harry added. "Use it wisely, and by 'wisely' I mean, 'in a way in which your father would disapprove".
"Our little secret," Scorpius repeated, beaming at Harry. Harry returned the smile.
"I'm really going to miss you," Harry said, his voice thick. He noticed Scorpius' eyes were unnaturally shiny.
"Me too. Harry, I know Dad is my dad, but you are too, you know. I love you. And thank you, for the Map and the Cloak."
"I love you too, Scorpius," Harry replied.
By ten o'clock, Draco was so agitated that Harry decided they should travel to King's Cross Station early. He shrunk Scorpius' trunk and secured Mercury, Scorpius' eagle owl, into his cage, whilst Scorpius said a goodbye to Eric the cat.
The trio stepped outside of the large, beautifully-maintained five-bedroom Tudor cottage in the Dorset countryside Harry and Draco had bought together a few years ago, and Apparated to London. Harry was hit with overwhelming nostalgia as they approached the barrier between platforms nine and ten; suddenly he, too, was a small boy of eleven, off on his first Hogwarts Express journey.
"Take the barrier at a run," Harry heard Draco tell Scorpius, and Scorpius took off at speed, a determined expression etched on his face, before he disappeared. He and Draco looked at each other.
"Race you," Draco said, and both men ran. Draco got there first, disappearing onto platform nine and three-quarters and re-joining Scorpius a fraction of a second before Harry. All three were panting slightly and laughing.
The platform was already busy. There were nervous-looking first-years, and huge, confident seventh-years, standing around with trunks and owls in cages very similar to Scorpius'. With a shout of delight, Scorpius noticed Teddy with Andromeda, and ran to meet him.
"Hey, Teddy," Harry said as they caught up to Scorpius. "Ready for another year?"
"Yeah," Teddy grinned. "Going to be weird with you there this year too, Scorp!"
Teddy was about to start his fourth year at Hogwarts. He had, to no one's surprise, taken after his father and was was Sorted into Gryffindor when he started Hogwarts three years' previously. He was also on the Quidditch team, playing Beater. Harry had bought him his broomstick when he made the team in his third year, as a way of saying congratulations.
Thick steam poured out of the scarlet Express' chimney, and it made a loud hissing noise. Harry checked his watch; it was five minutes to eleven. He swallowed thickly and took Draco's hand.
"You'd better get on the train," he said reluctantly to Scorpius. He was just loading Scorpius' trunk onto the carriage when a harried-looking Ron and Hermione, followed by Hugo and Rose, ran up to the train.
"Couldn't have you going off to Hogwarts without saying goodbye now, could we?" Ron said breathlessly, and he gave Scorpius a hug. It was testament to how far he and Draco had come in the last six years that the blond didn't even so much as flinch. Scorpius chuckled.
"You're all acting like I'm not coming back!" he quipped.
Harry heard the guard's whistle, and hurried Scorpius onto the train, where he took a seat in a carriage with Teddy, Teddy's best friend Jacob Wood, and a boy he knew from his private tuition lessons who was also starting Hogwarts for the first time that day. The doors were all slammed shut, and the guard blew his whistle a final time. The Hogwarts Express lurched into life, slowly at first but quickly gaining momentum, as it pulled out of King's Cross Station. Harry and Draco watched it until it disappeared. Harry noticed Draco's grip on his hand had become almost unbearably tight.
"Right. We'd best be off then," Harry said. "Neville is expecting us in Hogsmeade for lunch." Ron laughed.
"I can't believe you're going to spy on Scorpius' Sorting, Harry!" Hermione said. "Just to settle this childish bet between the two of you a day earlier than it would be if you just waited for an owl." But she said it with a smile on her face.
"Come on, Hermione, there's got to be some perks to having the head of Gryffindor house as one of your closest friends," Harry replied.
Harry stopped to say a quick hello to Oliver Wood, Jacob's father, before making his way to the Apparition point in the station, where he and Draco Apparated to Hogsmeade. As arranged, Neville was waiting for them in the Three Broomsticks.
It was very weird being back at Hogwarts, Harry thought later, as Neville led them through the castle's wards and to the Great Hall. He stared at the plaque on the floor, which was set into the stone. It read simply, on this spot on the second of May 1998, Tom Riddle, known as Lord Voldemort, fell. Harry was grateful to Professor McGonagall for not including his name on it.
Before long he and Draco could hear chatter which indicated the students had arrived. They Disillusioned themselves and stood in the corner, where they were guaranteed to remain unnoticed by anyone. Twenty minutes later Hagrid appeared at the staff table, indicating the first-years had crossed the lake safely. Harry's tummy was doing somersaults as Neville led them in moment later.
After the Sorting Hat's song, which was a lot more jovial than it was during Harry's own time at school, and the applause died down, Neville unravelled his scroll and began to call names. Harry grabbed on to Draco's Disillusioned arm as the 'Ls' were Sorted, knowing who was next.
"Maddox, Eleanor!" Neville called. A small girl with messy blonde hair and glasses sat on the stall and Neville placed the Hat on her head.
"Hufflepuff!" shouted the Hat.
"I'm going to cry if I hear that next time," Draco's voice said. Harry chuckled. No chance of that, he thought. He knew exactly where Scorpius was going. The bet was his.
"Malfoy-Potter, Scorpius," Neville called. There was a scatter of excited chatter that accompanied this, and reminded Harry of his own Sorting. Scorpius sat down on the stall, and Neville placed the Hat on top of his blond hair. Any second now, Harry thought.
The Hat took a while. Longer than for any other student so far, except a tiny child with red hair that had taken a full three minutes before the Hat had finally chosen Ravenclaw. Harry could hear Draco's nervous breathing next to him. Then, finally-
"Slytherin!" the Hat roared. Harry heard Draco's surprised gasp, and couldn't keep his own smug smile from his face. He only wished Draco could see it at that moment.
They sat quietly then until the Sorting was over, and after 'Yates, Thomas' (who was Scorpius' friend from their tuition sessions) also became a Slytherin, the Feast began. Harry and Draco slipped out of the Hall, unnoticed by anyone, and cleared the school grounds before they dared remove the Disillusionment Charms from themselves. When they did, Harry had a second to stare at Draco's stunned but delighted face before they Apparated home, to a very empty, huge, silent cottage.
Draco was still beaming when they entered the living room.
"I was so sure he was going to Gryffindor," he said. "He's brave, and daring, and he has you, and Teddy, and all the Weasleys, and-"
"And has you as his father, Draco," Harry interjected. "And as for bravery and daring- you seem to be under the impression that Slytherins cannot have any of those traits. The very fact you're alive today is proof that Slytherins can be brave, too. And, besides, he's a cunning little git. It was never in doubt."
"I've never been so delighted to lose in my life," Draco said. "And you're not disappointed? That he's not in your old house?"
"No," Harry replied honestly. "I told him years ago that it didn't matter to me what house he went to when he started Hogwarts, and I meant it. Beside, Slytherins are kind of fucking amazing, you know." He wiggled his eyebrows suggestively and began to kiss a trail from Draco's lips to his neck.
"I'm assuming you want to call your winnings in now, then?" Draco said, and Harry was satisfied to notice the change in breathing pattern the kisses elicited.
"Yes. On your knees, Malfoy," Harry replied. Draco smirked and dropped to his knees in front of Harry. Oh yes, Harry thought, as he gave a contented sigh in appreciation of Draco's talented mouth.
It was going to be odd with Scorpius away at school now- the house was going to be too quiet and far too clean, but he and Draco had each other, and as Harry fisted Draco's hair and thrust into his mouth, he decided he was never, ever, going to let him go.
'Love hath made thee a tame snake.'- William Shakespeare, As You Like It