Since Voldemort’s demise, Kingsley, who had been voted the new Minister of Magic, and the Muggle Prime Minister had met for lunch, about once a quarter, to catch up on what was happening in each other’s worlds. Kingsley wanted to have an ongoing relationship with the Muggle Prime Minister, not just turn to him or her in times of crisis. While he was working with the Prime Minister, he and Kingsley had grown to respect and even like each other. Kingsley often enjoyed these lunches, but today he had a special request.
“So let me get this straight,” said the Prime Minister. “You want me to incarcerate this witch in a Muggle Penitentiary?”
“Won’t that be dangerous? I mean, she can do magic.”
“Not without her wand, she can’t. I know I have mentioned before that wandless magic is possible in some cases, but this witch is nowhere near powerful enough to ever manage it.”
“But there is a wizarding prison, right?”
“Yes, but I thought for this person, putting her in Muggle Prison would be a far more appropriate punishment. Isn’t it your Gilbert and Sullivan who said, ‘Let the punishment fit the crime’?”
“So this is one of the lot who was trying to do away with Muggles and Muggle-borns?”
“Yes. Our Aurors just captured her. My first thought had been to make her write lines with her own Black Quill, but I can’t tolerate the use of Dark Artifacts, so I thought putting her in Muggle Prison would be much better.”
The Prime Minister stared at Kingsley in confusion, but decided not to ask. “All right, then. We’ll arrange it.”
“Thank you very much.”
Kingsley and the Prime Minister finished their lunch, and said their good-byes. Kingsley was following the Minister to the door when a beautiful woman sitting in the café caught his eye. She had milk chocolate colored skin, black curly hair, which looked so soft, he wanted to run his fingers through it, and the most amazing eyes . . . Eyes. Shite. She had realized Kingsley was staring at her. Kingsley blushed, but he held her gaze.
Lynette was having a wonderful trip to England. She had promised herself that she would do something special when her book sold, and now she was celebrating. She had spent a week doing touristy things around London, but now wanted to experience the non-touristy side. Several people who worked at her hotel had suggested this little café on Charing Cross Road. Lynette thought it was wonderful. She was especially enjoying people watching.
There were two men, she wasn’t sure if they were friends or were having a business meeting, but they had certainly caught her eye. She thought one of them looked very much like the Prime Minister she had seen on T.V. the previous evening, but that couldn’t be right. Wouldn’t the Prime Minister have body guards or secret service people or something? Maybe they didn’t do that in England. But the other man completely held her attention. She hated to be cliché, but tall, dark, and handsome certainly applied to him. He was extremely well-dressed in a three piece suit, but had an earring. That was an unusual combination. And VERY interesting. She couldn’t make out the words he was saying, but she could hear his voice—deep, slow, and very sexy.
When they got up to leave, Lynette caught the eye of the handsome man with the earring. He seemed embarrassed to be caught looking at her, but held her gaze. Lynette gestured for him to come over to her table.
Nineteen Years Later . . .
“Love, take my hand and come on. The children have already gone through.”
“You know I hate this thing, Kings.”
“Yes, dear. You say that every time, but the children were slow this morning, and if we don’t hurry we’ll miss seeing them off on the Express.”
Lynette took Kingsley’s hand, closed her eyes, and stepped through the solid wall with him onto Platform 9¾. Six years ago, when their oldest was a first year, was her first time. When Kingsley told her she had to step through the wall, Lynette thought it would be like Diagon Alley. She didn’t know she had to LITERALLY Step. Through. The. Wall. Oh, well. It was over for another year. Six more years, and their fourth child would be finished at Hogwarts, then no more stepping through the Kings Cross wall for her.
Their four children were waiting for them right where they were supposed to be. As the family crossed the platform, flashbulbs went off and reporters began to shout, “Minister! Madam Secretary!”
Kingsley held up his hand, and the press was instantly silent. “Right now, my wife and I need to see our children off to Hogwarts. We will gladly give you a few minutes to interview us when the train has departed. Thank you.” Without waiting for an answer, all six Shacklebolts continued to the Express.
Lynette was very glad the press was much nicer to her now than it had been at first. Even in the post-Voldemort world, the Minister of Magic’s marriage to a Muggle writer was very big news. Then when she was made Undersecretary for Muggle Relations, Kingsley was accused of blatant nepotism, which was true, but as Kingsley said, “Who better to oversee Muggle Relations than a Muggle who has given birth to 2 witches and 2 wizards, and is intimately familiar with the wizarding world?” Or as Kingsley added to her later, “Intimately familiar with one particular wizard.”
Lynette and Kingsley hugged and kissed all four children good-bye. As the train pulled away, Lynette knew they would now have to face the press. Yuck. But then they could go home, and for the first time in 16 years, it would be just the two of them. Hmmm . . . .