The Trial of Dolores Umbridge
"Dolores Jane Umbridge," Percy Weasley read. "You stand before the Wizengamot facing some very serious charges."
The toad-like woman looked around her, her obvious fear kept her shaking almost uncontrollably. The entire court was present, towering over her like some massive stone monument…a monument that kept turning towards each other and whispering.
"Charges including, but not limited to;" Percy continued. "Receiving of stolen property, use of cruel torture in situations not requiring it, multiple counts of wanton destruction of another wizard's wand…"
"They WEREN'T wizards," Dolores squealed in fear. "They were filthy mudbloods, Muggles taking power from wizards…power they didn't deserve!"
"The wizard's lineage has nothing to do with the trial at hand," Percy said coldly. "The excuse that they were Muggle-Born, and thus deserved it holds no weight in Kingsley Shacklebolt's Ministry, and I would appreciate it if you did not interrupt me."
Dolores bowed her head meekly, trying to make herself look small and insignificant.
"Serves her right the toad," Hermione whispered to Ron. Ron said nothing back, but kept his eyes focused on his brother. Humility suited Percy, and Kingsley was already impressed Percy's efforts to clean up the Ministry.
"Use of Dementors in the so-called-interrogation of Muggle-Born wizards," Percy continued, looking absolutely sickened. "Use of the Dementor's Kiss in punishment for non-compliance with the interrogation of said Muggle-Borns."
Percy rolled up the parchment as the members of the Wizengamot murmured to one another.
"How do you plead?"
"Not Guilty!" Dolores squealed in terror.
Percy nodded as the Wizengamot began writing. Dolores looked up at them imploringly
"We call to the stand Mr. Harry James Potter of Number Twelve Grimmauld Place," Percy said. "Current head of the Auror Department."
Harry got up, sliding away from Ron and Hermione; he glanced back at them and smiled half heartedly.
"Good luck," Hermione whispered.
"Mr. Potter," Percy said as Harry took his place on the stand. "On the Second day of September of 1997 what events occurred?"
"Hermione, Ron and I used Polyjuice Potion to break into the Ministry of Magic," Harry said. "With the intention of relieving Miss Umbridge of a locket that had been stolen from my house. I was disguised as Albert Runcorn; I don't remember who Ron and Hermione were."
Dolores looked down at the locket around her neck. It has an S engraved on the cover, she knew it had been stolen, because she had claimed it from a thief, but stolen from Harry Potter?
"Why was a stolen locket so important?" Percy inquired. Harry swallowed. He had practiced this before, but it was still hard to get out. Very few people had known of the Horcruxes. Few people still did. All of the Weasley's knew, and so did Kingsley, McGonagall, and Neville.
Kingsley had told the Wizengamot prior to this trial, but it was still hard to get out. The Horcruxes had cost so much…Dumbledore, Dobby, Fred…Snape. Harry took a deep breath and spoke.
"The Locket in question was in fact a Horcrux," Harry said. There were a number of gasps from the audience and even from some of the members of the Wizengamot, they had read of the Horcruxes but could not believe it. Such awful magic went into creating the objects. Even Dolores paled and looked down at the fake locket around her neck.
"The Horcrux belonged to Lord Voldemort." Harry said plainly. There was a collective shudder. Even in his death, people did not like to speak his name.
"Did you succeed," Percy said, who had been braced for this question.
"Yes," Harry said quietly. "Hermione cast a Gemini charm and duplicated Slytherin's locket, while we made off with the real one and destroyed it."
Dolores looked dumbly at the locket around her neck. A Gemini charm usually faded after a while, but she'd had the locket for over a year after Harry had infiltrated the Ministry.
Percy nodded at Harry again, encouraging him.
"And what did you witness while you were in the ministry, disguised as Albert Runcorn?" he asked.
"Dolores Umbridge," Harry said, unwilling to call her Professor. "She was using Dementors to intimidate and scare Muggle-Borns who had been called in for that evil Muggle-Born Registration act. She even threatened them with a kiss."
Dolores shuddered again.
"We had originally intended to get the locket and get out," Harry said emotionally. "But it…we couldn't leave them there, to face Azkaban or a Kiss."
Harry shuddered. "We cast Patronus Charms, and helped everyone to escape…told them to leave the country."
Dolores stared hard at her former student…she had never imagined that Harry would be testifying at this trial, and she knew then and there that she would not be acquitted.
"Harry," Percy said softly. "What are the scars on your right hand?"
Harry closed his eyes and held up his right hand, clenching it into a fist, so that the words shone white against his skin I must not tell lies.
A large Mirror on the right side of the courtroom zoomed in on the reflection of Harry's hand, so everyone could see.
"The mark of my detentions with her," Harry said. "When the world refused to listen to me after I said Voldemort was back."
The Wizengamot murmured amongst themselves again, turning away from Dolores for a moment they were whispering rapidly. Finally Griselda Marchbanks turned towards the crowd.
"Miss Dolores Jane Umbridge," Griselda said sternly. "After reviewing the evidence prior to the trial, and the testimony of Harry Potter, it is the Wizengamot's decision that on this day, the Date of December 15th of 1998 you are sentenced to Azkaban with possibility of a hearing in ten years time."
Dolores's Eyes widened with fear, she tried to say something but it came out as a mere squeak.
"You are lucky," Marchbanks continued. "That the current head of the Auror department does not believe that the Dementors should be allowed near Azkaban."
Umbridge blinked in surprise at this last statement and looked over at Harry, who'd gone to sit with Ron and Hermione again.
"The Courtroom is dismissed," Percy said waving his hand as Dawlish and Proudfoot came to retrieve Umbridge to escort her to Azkaban.
Harry, Ron, Hermione slipped out of the old courtroom and casually headed down the stairs, towards level 2 preparing to head to Harry's office.
"You all right?" Ron asked his friend. Umbridge wasn't the only trial that Harry had to witness (or testify at) this year, but had gotten better. Most of the Death Eaters had turned themselves in after Voldemort's death, and thus the recent trials had been for conspirators (like Umbridge) who had accepted the Ministry takeover willingly, minor roles in the war.
Harry looked weary and battle-worn, but managed a smile for his friends. "Yeah, I'll be fine. I've got you guys, and I've got Kreacher, who insists on taking care of me."
"And you've got Christmas coming up," Hermione said brightly. Harry's face brightened as thoughts of his huge Christmas plans danced through his head. The Trio paused at the 4th floor.
"This is my office," Hermione said smiling. She reached over and kissed Ron on the cheek. "We're still on for tomorrow right Harry?" she asked as she turned to leave.
"Wouldn't miss it for the world," Harry said grinning, the "tired old man" look leaving altogether.
Ron turned to his best mate and gave him one of those "what-the-heck-are-you-doing-with-my-girlfriend-tomorrow?" looks.
"Harry," Ron asked, with a jealous tone in his voice. But before Ron could ask whatever it was that he intended to ask Harry smacked him upside the head.
"Ow!" Ron jerked. "What was that for?"
"As I have said before Ronald Bilius Weasley," Harry said. "She's my sister."
Ron's ears shifted to the Weasley pink. "Yeah, well you never know, something could shift and you see her in a whole new light…" he trailed off.
"Yeah, Uh-huh," Harry said rolling his eyes as he got into the lift with Ron. "It could except for the fact that I am truly and totally, madly in love with your sister."
Ron's ears went a deeper shade of pink.
"Seriously Ron," Harry said resisting the urge to smack his friend again. "I haven't looked at another woman since sixth year."
"Yeah, all right so what are you and Hermione doing tomorrow then?" Ron asked sheepishly as the lift opened up to the 8th floor.
Harry paused…he knew that he'd have to tell Ron eventually, but still, he wanted to wait until after he'd asked Mr. Weasley's permission.
"I can't say just yet," Harry said mischievously. "Though I can tell you that it involves your sister."
Ron looked at his friend curiously, as though Ron was about to guess but didn't want to say in case he was wrong.
"Though Hermione will prolly tell you if you ask her," Harry said.
At that moment Ron's watch began chiming. He glanced at it and sighed.
"George needs me at the shop," Ron said turning. "Guess I'll see you at Christmas. Have you convinced my mum to let you host Christmas at Number 12?"
"Not yet," Harry said. "I'm trying though, I've half a mind to have Kreacher move all the gifts and stuff from the Burrow in the middle of the night."
"Oh mum will hate that," Ron said grinning, he paused as if thinking. "You should do it."
The Watch chimed insistently and Ron rolled his before Disapparating to Weasley's Wizard Wheezes.
Harry smiled inwardly, if everything went according to plan, this would be the best Christmas ever.