A/N: I was inspired by a post on tumblr about Harry quitting his job to run Florean's, so... here. :D
One day, Harry paused in the midst of filling in another form. He looked around the cluttered office, at more forms in precarious stacks, the cold coffee in stained mugs. He let out a deep breath, tugged the Auror pin from his collar, and left it on the Minister's desk on top of a handwritten note that only said, "I quit. - HJP"
Hermione is the first one to find him, laying in the grass in only jeans and a tshirt. His feet are bare to the sun and a fat honey bee buzzes in the flowers nearby. When she stops, standing above him and blocking the sun across his face, he cracks open a bright green eye before smiling as the eye closes again. "Hey, Hermione."
"Harry..." Her voice is high-pitched, clearly worried. "What are you doing?"
"Enjoying the sunshine, love. Want to join me? Lots of grass here." He pats the open space nearby.
"Are you… is there…" She trails off before huffing impatiently, "Oh, for heaven's sake! Are you having some kind of mental breakdown or something, because if so, you know that I am prepared to be right here with you for the entire thing, but I need you to tell me so that I can be prepared for that!"
Harry bursts into laughter, bright and clear, ringing between the houses. It's honest, spontaneous laughter from him for the first time in ages. Hermione tilts her head, looking down at him for a long moment before she finally just laughs a little incredulously under her breath and sheds her robes in order to plop down into the grass beside him. Their fingers tangle together as they lay in the sun.
Ron finds them both almost an hour later, peers at them for a moment, before he shrugs and stretches out on the grass without a word, his head between theirs and arms tucked under their heads.
It's almost a whole day before the Prophet prints its first headline: Harry Potter Quits! Chosen One Breaks Down? Harry, having never received the Prophet again after the problems during Hogwarts, merely smirks at it when Hermione shows it to him later that day.
It takes a week until Molly begins nagging after Harry. What is he going to do? Why did he quit, anyway? What will he do now? He finally blocks her Floo calls after three days of putting up with her nonstop chatter.
After another month, no one thinks twice about Harry strolling down the streets of Diagon Alley in the middle of the day, scruffy faced and wearing jeans under his open robe, off to visit George at the shop or to pop into the Quidditch shop.
It's almost six months later, in the midst of a heatwave in summer, Harry trudges through Diagon Alley with a frown. He had been occupying his time mostly with the more than occasional surprise appearances at Hogwarts; he found himself really enjoying being there and interacting with the kids. The thought of staying in the castle again, all of the grading (all of the paperwork!), and all of the politics - it was like the Auror's office again and it sounded horrible.
But it was years after the Battle, his constant appearances all around Wizarding England had made him so familiar to people that he wasn't a star attraction just by being in public anymore, and he was feeling the need for something more to occupy his time, with his own rules.
Suddenly, Harry collides with someone else, and he reacts, grabbing them and hugging them close as he stumbles and bumps into a wall hard enough to dislodge his glasses. "Merlin, so sorry!"
There's a burst of female laughter before they untangle from each other and Harry finds himself gaping down at Hannah Abbott, who is grinning back up at him brightly. "Harry! Oh goodness, how good to see you!"
"Hannah? Wow, you look good, I mean, great! Hi, yeah, it's been ages, hasn't it?" He laughs nervously, one hand running through his already messy hair a few times, making it even wilder.
"Yeah, yeah, it has been. How're you doing?" She tilts her head, smiling up at him. Her blonde hair is pulled back in a neat ponytail tugged down over her shoulder, brown eyes sparkling in the bright sunshine.
Harry bobs his head as he shoves his hands into his pockets, clearing his throat. "Oh, I'm good! Just wandering around, the house is so hot in this heat."
Hannah nods, waving a hand at her face. "Lord, definitely! It's so hot lately!" She pauses then smiles. "I'm actually heading into the Leaky for my shift, but I've got some time. Would you like to get a cold drink? I got some of those Muggle soda in through George, and he figured out the fizzing-cooling charm for it. It's been real popular."
"I haven't had a soda in a while, yeah, sure! I didn't know you were working at the Leaky, Hannah."
She laughs, waving a hand as they begin walking towards the Leaky Cauldron. "Oh, Harry, no. I own the Leaky now! After, uhm, after mum died, she left me everything, so I had all this money but I loved working at the Leaky and Tom wanted to retire, so… I bought it."
Harry blinks at her in shock before reaching out and grasping her hand. "Wow, Hannah, that's really wonderful! Congratulations."
"Thanks, Harry." Hannah beams at him, squeezing his hand back before tugging away, gently. "I appreciate it."
He clears his throat and grins back at her, a blush creeping across his cheeks.
Soda became dinner, dinner became dates. One night after a night out for dinner, Harry was walking Hannah down Diagon Alley back to her place above the Leaky when she mentioned out of the blue how much she missed Florean's ice cream.
He stumbles to a halt and stares at Hannah then turns to look back over at the empty building. "That's perfect."
"What's perfect?" Hannah frowns, glancing between Harry and the building. "What are you going on about now?"
Harry turns and looks over at her with a wide grin. "I'm going to re-open Florean's! It's perfect! I love helping you at the Leaky, and George at the shop, and I'll get to see the kids from Hogwarts… it's perfect."
Hannah laughs softly, watching Harry leap over to the dusty glass to peer through it. "He's right. It's perfect."
Ron's immediate reaction was, "Yes! Free ice cream!" much to Hermione's disgust and Harry's amusement.
Hermione contemplated it for a long moment before nodding with a smile. "Good plan, Harry."
Harry grins at her widely and, in twenty years when children go to Florean's Ice Cream before heading off to Hogwarts, it's still the same grin doubled over that they're greeted with, as Harry and Hannah's oldest, James, fresh from Hogwarts himself, helps his da out in the shop.