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HP after Hogwarts >> One Hundred and Three Days: Press Here by Northumbrian

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One Hundred and Three Days: Press Here

Andorra Pugh’s office door burst open, and Ginny Weasley stormed into the room. Andorra looked up from the magazine article she was reading and tried to keep her face a mask of professional courtesy. As she watched her team’s most famous Chaser, the Harpies’ public relations officer realised that the storm was rapidly becoming a tempest. Andorra experimented with a conciliatory smile. It had no effect, the clouds continued to gather on Ginny’s face.

‘I see you got my message, Ginny,’ said Andorra politely. ‘Please sit down.’

‘Why?’ demanded Ginny.

‘Because we have a lot to discuss,’ Andorra told her.

‘There’s nothing to discuss, Andorra,’ said Ginny forcefully.

‘There is,’ said Andorra firmly. ‘Please, sit down, Ginny. The sooner we start, the sooner we’ll be finished.’

Andorra motioned to the plush chair opposite her. She did her best to ignore the glare and remained silent until Ginny sat, folded her arms, and stared across the desk.

‘Why didn’t you tell us Ginny?’ Andorra asked.

‘Why should I?’ asked Ginny. ‘It has nothing to do with the club, or the press. Besides,’ Ginny waved her engagement ring under Andorra’s nose, ‘I’ve been wearing this for a year; anyone who didn’t realise that Harry and I were going to get married must be extremely thick.’

Andorra lifted a copy of the previous day’s Sunday Prophet from the pile of papers on her desk and showed Ginny the headline.

Wedding of the Year!
Harry and Ginny finally set a Date!

‘Nothing to do with the club?’ Andorra sighed. ‘I suppose that you Flooed into the stadium via the player’s fireplace. I walked in through the staff entrance. We’re under siege, Ginny! I’ve been fielding enquiries from the Daily Prophet, Witch Weekly, Quidditch Today, the Wizarding Wireless Network, and goodness knows who else.’

As if to emphasise her point, an owl tapped on Andorra’s window. ‘Excuse me,’ Andorra grumbled. She opened the window and took the letter. She broke the seal and quickly glanced at the contents. It was more of the same, this time from the Harpies Fan-club Magazine.

‘This one’s from “Aello, Celaeno and Ocypete”, it’s the same as the others,’ said Andorra. ‘They all want to know whether you’ll keep playing after you’re married, whether we’re going to renew your contract at the end of the season, and what our contingency plans are if you fall pregnant! And that’s just the start. Why didn’t you let us know you’d set a date, instead of simply telling the press?’

‘We did NOT, tell the press!’ Ginny snapped. ‘We were going to put a formal announcement in the Daily Prophet, but not until Easter, long after we’d sent out the invitations.’

With that revelation, Andorra finally realised why Ginny was so angry. ‘Ah,’ she said. ‘The Sunday Prophet implied that you’d leaked the story deliberately.’

‘I know! I read every one of the articles. Harry’s busy trying to find out who told the Prophet. The only people who knew were family, and some of our very close friends. If this is George’s idea of a joke then he will be in serious trouble! And if anyone else we know leaked it…’ Ginny’s eyes flamed angrily.

‘I’m sorry, Ginny. But we are where we are, and in the current situation we must issue a press release,’ said Andorra.

Ginny pursed her lips, and Andorra noticed the flicker of a mischievous smile. But before Ginny could say anything Andorra added, ‘Despite what you might think, Ginny, “Bugger off, it’s none of your damn business,” is not a statement to the press.’

‘It is!’ said Ginny firmly, but the smile moved from a flicker to a broad grin as she spoke. ‘It’s simply not what they want to hear.’

As Ginny finally began to relax, Andorra began to plan.

‘I’m Harpies’ Press Officer, Ginny. It’s my job to protect players from the press, and I’ll do everything I can to help you. But you can’t simply shout at the reporters, you need to keep them on your side. This is a good news story, isn’t it?’

Ginny smiled, ‘Not for some of Harry’s crazier fans, or some of mine, either.’

‘Some creeps and weirdos will do stupid things, but most people will be happy for you, and that’s how you should play it. We’re a family club, so I’m going to advise the management to play this like a family event. But we need you to be on your best behaviour, Ginny, I don’t want another “Harpies Hellions” episode,’ said Andorra firmly.

‘That was years ago,’ said Ginny. ‘And I was under an enchantment.’

‘Yes, but the press still have the photographs, and they’re continuing to use them,’ said Andorra. ‘I’ve drafted a few questions. We can run through them now, and then I’ll draft a press release. You can check it over before I release it, okay?’

‘Later,’ said Ginny, glancing at the wall clock. ‘I need to get changed and get on the pitch. Training starts in five minutes.’

‘No, Ginny, we’ll do it now! You’re not flying until I have your answers. And you’re not leaving the training ground until you’ve agreed the press release,’ said Andorra firmly. ‘And it’s no good looking at me like that. I’ve agreed it with Gwenog, and the management.’

Ginny gave a reluctant grunt of acquiescence.

‘I’m sorry, Ginny, but now that the papers know something, they will want to know everything.’ Andorra pulled out a quill and prepared to take notes. ‘Have the Prophet got the date right?’


‘The place?’

‘Yes, that’s right, too. We’ll be married at The Burrow, but the Auror Office will be organising security, the press will be excluded, and any uninvited insects will be swatted.’

‘Uninvited insects?’ Andorra asked.

‘Private joke; it doesn’t matter, forget it.’

‘Fine,’ Andorra shrugged. ‘How many guests have you invited?’

‘About a hundred and twenty, but it’s restricted to family, friends, and work colleagues.’ Ginny grinned mischievously. ‘You’d better do a bloody good job with the press release, Andorra; otherwise I’ll cross your name off the list.’

‘I … I’ll do my best,’ Andorra spluttered, trying to regain her composure. ‘You’re inviting your teammates and colleagues?’


‘And Harry’s inviting his colleagues in the Auror Office?’

‘Yes, well, not all of them, obviously.’

‘Will the Minister of Magic be getting an invitation?’

‘Damn it, Andorra, you’re no better than the reporters, you’re trying to lead me on. I’m not going to name anyone who’s being invited. The invitations will go out soon, next weekend, I hope. The press can have lots of fun finding out who’s coming after that.’

‘Okay,’ said Andorra. ‘Can you at least tell me who your bridesmaids will be?’

‘Yes, because they’ve already been asked. Hermione is Matron of Honour, Luna and my niece Victoire are bridesmaids and Harry’s godson, Teddy, will be pageboy. My brother Ron will be Harry’s best man. They’re all pretty obvious choices; the Prophet guessed the names, apart from Teddy and Victoire. That should be enough for you. Can I go now?’

‘No, not yet. Do you intend to continue to play for the Harpies after your wedding?’

‘Why shouldn’t I? There are plenty of married players in the league, and even more in long term relationships. I’m a professional Quidditch player. I bet no one is asking Harry if he’ll continue working as an Auror after we’re married, and his job is much more dangerous—and worse paid—than mine.’

‘Are you planning to start a family soon?’

‘That’s none of your business.’

‘You aren’t already pregnant, are you?’

‘Hell, no!’ Ginny stared into Andorra’s face. ‘Who’s spreading that rumour?’

‘Witch Weekly issued a “Wedding of the Year” special edition today.’ Andorra indicated the magazine she’d been reading when Ginny entered. ‘The “early visit from the stork” story is in the “Weather Vane” gossip column, along with a lot of old photographs of you and Harry, together and separate. You should take a look at it; they’ve included some “Hellions” photos, and several photographs of Harry with his arms around lots of other girls.’

‘The “other girls” will be Hermione, Luna, Susan, Bobbie, Lavender and Hannah, and possibly Parvati,’ snorted Ginny dismissively. ‘They’ll all be photos I’ve seen before.’

‘You’re right about the photos,’ said Andorra. ‘But there’s a gorgeous blonde, too.’ Andorra showed Ginny the photographs.

‘It’s only Gabrielle,’ said Ginny dismissively. She read the headline, “Harry’s girlfriends” and sighed. ‘One day I will kill Romilda Vane. You have my permission to put that in your press release.’

‘I won’t,’ Andorra dismissed Ginny’s empty threat. ‘Can I say that the Witch Weekly gossip column manages to get you names right, but nothing else, and that you have no immediate plans to start a family?’

‘I like that,’ Ginny chuckled. ‘If you want, you can say that I hope to get a lot of baby-making practice with Harry first.’

‘Have you bought a dress? Will you be using Madam Malkin?’

‘I haven’t even started looking at dresses. The wedding is months away. I’ve no idea where I’ll be buying the damn thing. I’ll probably look in some Muggle shops. I liked Hermione’s dress.’

‘What about the honeymoon?’

‘Ask Harry, he’s in charge of that.’

‘So you don’t know where you’ll be going?’

‘I know that we’ll be in the Muggle world somewhere. But Harry’s organising it.’

‘That’s romantic.’

‘I suppose it is, yes.’ The storm clouds had long since fled Ginny’s face and, as she thought about her fiancé, she radiated happiness. ‘Harry volunteered to do it. He wants to be involved, he wants to surprise me, and he knows more about Muggle holiday destinations than I do.’

‘You won’t be going to a Wizarding location?’

‘We never do. We like to have a holiday where we aren’t pestered by the press and public. But do not tell anyone that.’

‘There are four weeks between the end of the Quidditch season and the European Cup. Did you deliberately fix the wedding date to make sure that you’d be available to play for England over the Summer, if you’re re-selected?’


‘And Harry is okay with that?’

‘Of course he is. He’s a Quidditch fan, remember?’ Ginny grinned.

‘Are you going to change your name?’

‘Am I what?’ Ginny was startled by the question.

‘After you marry, will you be Mrs Ginny Potter,’ asked Andorra

‘Yes. What’s wrong with becoming Mrs Potter? It’s the name that will change, not me. There are lots of Weasleys and not many Potters. Why even ask?’

Andorra, who knew exactly why Gwenog Jones had wanted that particular question answered, struggled to think of an acceptable reason. Fortunately, she heard Harry Potter’s voice coming from Ginny’s shoulder bag.

‘Ginny?’ said Harry. Ginny reached into the bag and pulled out a mirror.

‘Hello, Harry,’ said Ginny, smiling.

‘Oh!’ Harry sounded startled and a little worried. ‘I didn’t really expect you to answer. I thought you’d be flying. Is everything okay?’

‘I’m with Andorra in the press office. The Harpies want to issue a statement about us. Can you get here for the end of the training session? If you can, we can both check the press release with Andorra. Have you found out who leaked the story?’

‘Yes and yes,’ said Harry. ‘I’ve cancelled my meetings today, there was nothing important. I’ve taken the day off to sort this mess out. I can be in Holyhead within the hour. The printers, Bind Brothers, are responsible for the leak. Barrington Bind sent a copy of the draft invitation to the press. I reminded him that he’d promised to keep our order confidential, so I’ve cancelled the order and spoken to someone at Deckle and Block instead. I haven’t placed the order with them yet, I was going to come and talk to you about it first. Will I have to sneak into the ground to watch you practice?’

‘Definitely not, Mr Potter,’ called Andorra quickly. ‘I’ll arrange for you to use the Manager’s personal Floo connection.’

‘Thanks, Andorra,’ Harry called. ‘Get flying Ginny, you need the practice. You only scored eight goals last week.’

‘In an away game, against the best Keeper in the League,’ protested Ginny, smiling at his teasing. ‘I’ll see you soon, Harry, bye.’

‘See you soon, Ginny,’

Ginny broke the connection and looked hopefully at Andorra, who indicated that she could leave. The second Ginny left, Andorra began to organise.

Holyhead Harpies would like to join the rest of the Wizarding world in congratulating our International Chaser Ginny Weasley in her forthcoming marriage to Senior Auror Harry Potter.

Both Harry and Ginny have expressed their sadness at the way the news of their wedding date was leaked to the press. “We’ve sacked the person responsible,” Harry told us. “We both lead busy lives and we do not seek publicity. We were hoping for a quiet family wedding and we hope that people will respect our privacy.”

In an exclusive interview with Harpies Press Officer Andorra Pugh, the happy couple revealed that, as from the end of this season, Ginny Weasley will no longer be playing for the Holyhead Harpies. But don’t worry, fans, your favourite Chaser is simply teasing you. Ginny will still be here, but next season you’ll need to look for a new name: Ginny Potter. In her own words: “It’s the name that will change, not me”.

The timing of the wedding means that, if England choose to reselect our Chaser, then Ginny Potter’s first ever Quidditch game will be for England, not the Harpies.

Andorra watched anxiously as Harry continued to read the article. It was vague and full of good wishes, with a couple of snippets of news (like the fact that Harry was organising the honeymoon).

‘It looks okay to me, Andorra,’ said Harry. ‘But Ginny might want to make a few changes. Can we go out into the stands now? I like to watch Ginny fly.’

‘Of course,’ Andorra smiled. ‘Bernice Baker—the club’s official photographer—is here, Harry. Is it okay if she takes a few photographs of you and Ginny? We’ll use them for our press release and also for next week’s match programme. Of course, you can have final approval of any photos we use.’

‘I suppose so,’ Harry shrugged. He was already on his feet and heading for the Director’s box. Andorra watched him leave. He was still in his Auror uniform. This would be perfect, provided the photographer did her job properly.

As they sat in the box, Andorra didn’t watch the Harpies training, she watched the photographer snapping Ginny flying, and Harry watching. When Gwenog finally blew the whistle on the practice session, Harry stood and waved. Ginny flew towards him. Bernice Baker gave Andorra a happy smile, and an urgent grimace. Realising that she’d be in the shot, Andorra dived under the table and hid. Above her, Harry and Ginny kissed, and the camera clicked.

‘Well done, Bernice, and you too, Andorra, for spotting the opportunity,’ said Harpies Manager Gwenog Jones the following day. She waved the photograph triumphantly. It showed Ginny, in her Harpies gear, kissing Harry, who was in his Auror uniform.

‘This photograph is everywhere, in every newspaper and magazine. It’s the most published new photo of the happy couple, and the bride-to-be is in her Quidditch gear. It’s brilliant! I don’t know how you persuaded them to let us use it, Andorra, but it is wonderful publicity for the club. I reckon we can expect a capacity crowd at the game on Saturday. Make sure that we’ve got plenty of Ginny Weasley posters, Andorra, and be sure to talk to marketing. Tell them to source some new Harpies shirts with the name “Potter” on the back. I don’t care how much they cost; we need them before Saturday’s game. And tell them to keep the “Weasley” shirts on the shelves, too. I’m certain that a lot of the fans will buy both.’ Gwenog smiled contentedly.

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