Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is almost here! It's time to dig in faster than you can say “it’s wingardium leviOsa, not leviosAH.” But first, to bring you up to speed, here's a refresher on what happened in the last chapter of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, which came out nine years ago.
In the epilogue, J.K. Rowling flashes forward nineteen years to show us what everyone's favorite characters are up to, and it’s all about new beginnings. The golden trio's a bunch of grown-ups now with their own kids. It’s September, and everyone arrives at King's Cross to ship their magical kids off to Hogwarts. Here's a quick rundown.
1. Who married who?
Harry married Ginny, which wasn't necessarily popular with fans who felt Ginny lacked personality because she mainly just had red hair and made the occasional observation. But in the epilogue, Ginny's excellent at putting Harry at ease.
Ron married Hermione who has complete faith in him. They have a great thing going, which proves the central theme that love conquers all and you might marry your frenemy one day.
Even Draco got someone to marry him. We don't know how. Ask an ancient mirror or something.
2. Who are all the kids?
Harry and Ginny have three kids: James is the oldest son, named after Harry's father, and he's already a cheeky Hogwarts regular who loses his mind when he finds out that Victoire Weasley and Teddy Lupin are kissing. Albus is a first-year student, and the Harry-est one in the mix. First name: Albus, for Dumbledore, Middle name: Severus after Snape. He looks just like his dad. The youngest, Lily, is named after Harry's mother. She doesn't start witch school for another two years, which she finds annoying.
Ron and Hermione have two kids: Oldest daughter Rose is the only one who shows up to the platform wearing her school robes, so she obviously takes after her mother. Hugo, like Lily, hasn't started school yet. Ron is already a card-carrying member of the suburban dad club. He’s so proud of his ability to park a car in the real world that he has to tell Harry straight away, and he imparts two dad rules to Rose: Gryffindor or bust, and absolutely no pureblood boys.
Draco Malfoy, who appears as the steam thins wearing a “dark coat buttoned up to his throat” has one appropriately named kid, Scorpius, who looks just like his dad. Also, Draco's hair has receded.
3. What is Albus's destiny?
James is tormenting Albus about how he might land in Slytherin, and Albus has completely lost his grip if he even ever had one to begin with. We just met Albus, but it’s very clear he’s got a serious case of separation anxiety and believes all the nonsense James says to freak him out.
4. What's Harry like as a dad?
When walking identity crisis Albus asks Harry, “what if I’m in Slytherin?” Harry crouches down and tells him that he’s named after two splendid headmasters and that it doesn’t matter where he ends up because that’s just how blessedly loved he is. He thankfully informs Albus that he can choose to tell the Sorting Hat he doesn't want to ride for a villainous snake if he feels that strongly about it. As far as Slytherin goes, Albus is likely going with “bye.”
5. Does Albus understand who his father is?
Not really. When everyone's staring at the Potters at the train station, Albus gets his first taste of his father's célébrité, which he doesn't quite understand yet.
6. Is everybody O.K.?
Seems that way. The whole parents dropping their littles off for school scene is so normcore and death-threat free that it makes the rest of the books look like Saw.
And look! Even the lightning scar isn’t burning Harry’s face off with the force of a thousand fire-breathing dragons to remind him that death is near anymore. So basically, it’s the wizarding world’s version of a happy ending.
Read more about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, eighth story in the series here.