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Everything The Duke & Duchess Of Sussex Revealed About Their Romance In Harry & Meghan

The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan premiered on Netflix on 8 December, inevitably causing a media frenzy; here, a breakdown of what the couple shared about their much-scrutinised romance, from their first date to their engagement party.

Harry originally requested to meet Meghan after spotting her on a friend’s Instagram

“Meghan and I met over Instagram,” he tells director Liz Garbus at the beginning of the series. “I was scrolling through my feed, and someone who was a friend had this video of the two of them, it was like a Snapchat… with doggy ears and – that was the first thing. I was like, ‘Who is that?’” Meghan, in turn, stalked Harry on Instagram after their mutual friend mentioned his interest, finding herself taken with his environmental shots and the “time he was spending in Africa”. Shortly afterwards, the two began to correspond via text, organising their first date at Soho House on 76 Dean Street.

Harry turned up late to their first date

“I couldn’t understand why he would be late!” Meghan says, laughing. “But he kept texting. He was like, ‘I’m in traffic. I’m so sorry. I’m in traffic. I’m so sorry.’... Then I didn’t know him, so I was like, ‘Oh, is this what he does? Got it.’ And I was just not interested in that.” For his part, Harry was actually “panicking. I was freaking out. I was, like, sweating” – ultimately showing up “a hot, sweaty, red ball of mess”. “You genuinely were, like, so embarrassed!” Meghan adds.

The pair attempted to stay under the radar for as long as possible

“When I got to meet M, I was terrified of her being driven away by the media – the same media that had driven so many other people away from me,” Harry confides, using his nickname for Meghan. “I knew that the only way that this could possibly work is by keeping it quiet for as long as possible.” When, several months into their relationship, communications secretary Jason Knauf informed Harry and Meghan that the news of their romance had been leaked to a tabloid, they decided to spend their last night of freedom at a Halloween party, with Harry wearing a bandana and goggles. “[We just thought], pull the pin on the fun grenade!” he remembers.

While Meghan instituted a “two-week rule” during the early days of their relationship – meaning they would never go more than a fortnight without seeing each other – much of their courtship happened over the phone

“At the beginning, our relationship was this guarded little… guarded treasure,” Meghan explains. “It was long-distance from the beginning. Everything was just texts and FaceTimes, and we just talked for hours, and it just felt exciting, which is so weird because it wasn’t exciting in the way that I think people would assume that it would be. It was just relaxed and easy. We just got to know each other. Truly, like any other couple, we were figuring out, like, what do you like to eat? What do you like to cook? What kind of movies do you like?”

The couple had their third date in Botswana

In the summer of 2016, Harry was heading to southern Africa to do conservation work, and Meghan had a break from filming Suits. “He said, do you want to come to Botswana?” Meghan says – an offer she promptly accepted, although not without some doubts. “I’m getting on a plane and I’m going to the middle of the bush? What? What am I doing? What if we don’t like each other, and then we’re stuck in the middle of the bush in a tent?” For Harry’s part, he was “astonished” that she agreed to“living in a tent [with him] for five days” having only met him twice before. “You put a lot of faith and a lot of trust in me on that trip,” he praises her.

Harry credits Meghan with sharing many of the same qualities as Diana, Princess of Wales

“So much of what Meghan is and how she is, is so similar to my mum,” he reflects. “She has the same compassion, she has the same empathy, she has the same confidence. She has this warmth about her. I accept that there will be people around the world who fundamentally disagree with what I’ve done and how I’ve done it, but I knew that I had to do everything I could to protect my family. Especially after what happened to my mum. I didn’t want history to repeat itself.”

The pair bonded over being children of divorce

“I think most kids who are the product of divorced parents have a lot in common, no matter what your background is,” Harry notes at one point. “Being pulled from one place to another, or maybe your parents are competitive, or you’re in one place longer than you want to be or another place less than you want to be… There’s all sorts of pieces to that.” Meghan, meanwhile, recites a poem she wrote aged 12 about spending weeks with her mother and weekends with her father, culminating in, “Life would be easier if there were two of me.”

The royal family adored Meghan during their initial meetings, but people in Harry’s circle had doubts about the longevity of the relationship

“I remember my family first meeting her and being incredibly impressed,” Harry says with a grin. “Some of them didn’t quite know what to do with themselves… They were surprised that a ginger could land such a beautiful woman – and such an intelligent woman – but the fact that I was dating an American actress is probably what clouded their judgement more than anything else at the beginning. Oh, she’s an American actress. This won’t last.” Meghan adds: “The actress thing was the biggest problem, funnily enough. There was a big idea of what that looks like from the UK standpoint.”

Harry proposed in the grounds of Kensington Palace

“I wanted to do it earlier,” he reflects. “Because I had to ask permission from my grandmother, I couldn’t do it outside of the UK. I did pop a bottle of champagne while she was roasting a chicken and that kind of slightly gave the game away. She was like, ‘You don’t drink champagne. What’s the occasion?’ I was like, ‘I don’t know. Just had it laying around here, whatever.’” He then led Meghan outside into the gardens of Kensington Palace, where he had laid out electric candles on a blanket, for the proposal. “It wasn’t that I knew she’d say yes, but she’d already moved Guy [her dog] over, so I had Guy as a hostage,” Harry quips. “Of course I got down on one knee. Of course I did.”

Their engagement party had an unusual theme

In the fortnight between Harry proposing and the formal announcement of their engagement, the couple hosted a private party “with everyone dressed in animal onesies”. Harry and Meghan wore matching penguin outfits – “because penguins mate for life”. One famous confidante who shared a testament to their lasting compatibility in the documentary? Serena Williams. “I’m looking at it through the lens of my friend, not as a Princess – they, as a couple, are so tight and rely on each other so much and are each other’s best, best, best friends. I was just super excited.”

A newly released clip revisits the couple’s first wedding dance

While there were plenty of candid insights into Meghan and Harry’s romance in the first three episodes, the second half of the series – which will drop on 15 December – promises further glimpses behind the curtain of their 2018 wedding at Windsor Castle. A new clip shared by Netflix makes it clear that the focus will be on the joyous moments surrounding their nuptials, including a never-before-seen window into their wedding reception. The snippet features Meghan dancing the night away in her Stella McCartney dress, and even a cameo from their close friend and performer at the event, Elton John. As for the song they chose for their very first dance, Wilson Pickett’s “Land of 1000 Dances?” Meghan notes that their decision was simple – “I just really wanted the music to be fun,” she says – although not before getting the name of the song mixed up. “I always get it wrong,” she smiles. “[We were] just spinning like a whirlwind. It was so great.”

This article was originally published in Vogue UK.

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