According to Skeeter, Harry — who looks much the same, save "a couple threads of silver in the famous Auror's black hair" — has a nasty gash over his right cheekbone. Since the Ministry of Magic refuses to comment on the nature of the cut, Skeeter assumes they must be hiding something. "Is the Chosen One embroiled in fresh mysteries that will one day explode upon us all, plunging us into a new age of terror and mayhem?" she poses. A girl can dream, can't she? If Harry has a strange, new wound, we can't think of any reason other than the fact that he is battling some new evil. And that, my friends, makes our muggle hearts flutter.
While we can't think of any other reason for Harry to be sporting a fresh cut, Skeeter can. "Or does his injury have a more humble origin, one that Potter is desperate to hide?" she probes. "Has his wife perhaps cursed him?" Hmm, interesting. Here's the thing: We were never really totally on board with the whole Harry and Ginny union to start with. Hex us if you will, but it just never felt… natural. To us, at least. While it seemed completely believable that young Ginny Weasley would have a major crush on her big brother's best friend — not mention the Chosen One — we could never quite buy Harry falling for her, especially with Hermione hanging in the balance (more on that in a bit). So, yeah, we could get on board with Skeeter's theory that there are "cracks beginning to show" in the marriage.
You remember Krum, don't you? He was the somewhat boorish, but definitely hunky, Bulgarian wizard and Seeker from the Durmstrang Institute who competed against Harry in the Triwizard Tournament. And, oh yeah, he courted Hermione during his time at Hogwarts. While he and Harry didn't necessarily have bad blood during the tournament, it wasn't as though they were particularly chummy, either. So what's with the fact that he and Harry "embraced upon meeting"? Or that Harry took his kids to meet Krum in the first place and stuck around for "half an hour's chat"? Skeeter doesn't posit much other than calling to light their lack of hard feelings, but we're thinking these two must be working together. Perhaps on the top-secret project that landed Harry that fresh gash?
Or, if you believe Rita Skeeter, Ron might even be struggling to accept the present. Although Harry's BFF —"whose famous ginger hair appears to be thinning slightly" — initially went to work with his now-wife Hermione and their pal Harry at the Ministry of Magic, Ron left after only two years to join in the family business, Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes. Skeeter suspects that he "had his fill of standing in Potter's shadow" or, even more troubling, that he is dealing with post-traumatic psychological stress from their Horcruxes quest. Honestly, Ron always struck us as a pretty simple, decent guy. Sure, he might still be battling some demons, but we don't think jealousy is one of them anymore. Unless….
Remember how we mentioned we weren't too crazy about Harry getting hitched to Ginny? Well, a major reason why we could never get behind their union was because we were secretly rooting for another: that of Harry and Hermione. Their connection was so strong and Hermione's deep, abiding love for Harry — platonic or otherwise — always gave us hope those two might eventually realize their true feelings for each other. Skeeter hints at this, noting that Hermione settled for "Potter's faithful sidekick." Plus, J.K. Rowling herself has admitted she regrets pairing Hermione with Ron, implying Hermione was out of Ron's league. You know what they say, Rowling… it's never too late to do the right thing.
Le sigh. Not only did we not get Harry and Hermione (yet), but we likewise saw our dreams dashed for a marriage between charmingly kooky Luna Lovegood and nerd-turned-total-bada** Neville Longbottom. Now "a popular Herbology teacher at Hogwarts," Neville has a wife named Hannah (Abbott, we assume). They both apparently like to partake liberally of Ogden's Old Firewhisky. Luna married Rolf Scamander, and the eccentric couple has twin sons. Maybe it's for the best — Luna Longbottom is a laughably bad name.
Skeeter doesn't stop with those characters. She goes on to question (and spread idle gossip, naturally) about everyone from Ron's brothers to Harry's godson, the half-werewolf Teddy Lupin. And while she certainly poses more questions than answers, she signs off with an intriguing promise: "And for those who want to know exactly how imperfect they are, my new biography: Dumbledore's Army: The Dark Side of the Demob will be available from Flourish and Blotts on July 31st. Hold your hippogriffs... does this mean Rowling will be dropping a surprise book at the end of the month? She has said she doesn't intend to write any more books in the Harry Potter installment, but she never said anything about Rita Skeeter penning one. Merlin's beard, people! Either way, it sure looks like Skeeter will be revealing more soon.
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