Harry stumbled his way into the door of the Burrow. He probably would have fallen had Ron not been there to help him. He was exhausted. The weeks since the Battle at Hogwarts had been filled with funerals of the fallen and meetings with the Ministry and Wizengamot. Today however had been a little different.
Ginny, George and Percy entered the kitchen as Ron and Harry fell into chairs Molly asked, "What's going on?"
"We were sidetracked on our way home from today's meetings." Ron replied.
Before she could ask him to explain she heard two pops and looked out to see Arthur and Kingsley running towards the house. Kingsley asked, "You two ok?"
Both nodded and Molly asked, "What happened?"
"I was in my office doing paperwork when he alarms went off." Kingsley said, "These are the alarms for spells in the Atrium. I tried to go see what was going on but two of my Aurors held me in my office until the threat was over. They told me there were Death Eaters in the Atrium, but nothing else."
Just then Bill, Fleur and Charlie came running through the yard. When they reached the kitchen Bill asked, "What's going on. Aurors came to us in the Alley and told us to come to the Burrow we were needed."
"Alarms for magic in use in the Atrium of the Ministry went off about thirty minutes ago." Arthur said, "I headed down but it took me almost five minutes. The Aurors were there just ahead of me but we weren't really needed. It seems several Death Eaters attacked Harry and Ron in the Atrium. Head Auror Robards will be by shortly."
Molly rushed over to Ron and Harry hugging each of them fiercely, she asked, "Are either of you hurt?"
"Only the crushed ribs I just got from your hug." Ron said.
Harry chuckled, "We were seen by a healer before they let us come home."
They heard a pop and Arthur looked out, "Head Auror Robards, Bill will you let him in please."
The Auror stepped into the crowded kitchen, "Minister, do you want to be briefed here or would you rather step outside?"
"Here is fine Nate," Kingsley said, "I'd just have to repeat it all to them anyway. What happened."
"I haven't questioned these two yet. But the witnesses said that around twenty Death Eaters started firing spells in the Atrium at Potter." Nate Robards said, "Everyone in the Atrium ran to escape or take cover, except Weasley and Potter. They engaged the Death Eaters. It was a short fight and it was only when the apparent leader fell that the rest left. They were not wearing masks so we are confident we have the names of those that escaped."
"Did any of the people in the Atrium help?" Kingsley asked.
"No," Nate said, "and two of them were Aurors. I'm quite disgusted that the forty adults in the Atrium did nothing to help these two. It's no wonder You-Know-Who was able to take over. We have more cowards than I thought possible. By the time the rest of the Auror's and other employees made it to help, these two had it wrapped up. We apprehended fifteen and have names for the other five. Three of the ones caught are on our top five list. Two that got away round out that list."
"So you are saying these two teenage boys captured fifteen wanted Death Eaters, and three of them were in the top five most wanted?" Nate nodded and Kingsley continued, "Who were the two Aurors in the Atrium and why didn't they help."
"Junior Aurors Smith and Nelson." Nate said, "Nelson had been trampled by people trying to get away and Smith was standing over him to protect him. Smith said that by the time they were clear of the crowd all he could do was watch as three more fell and five popped away. He said that Weasley stunned one, while Potter stunned one and punched the other. Nelson has been healed and sent home for the rest of the day."
Kingsley turned to Ron and Harry, "Can you two give a statement please."
Ron looked up and said, "We left the lift and walked across the Atrium. We were headed home after the last meeting for the day. About half way across someone yelled 'Potter you will pay for you insolence' and spells started coming from all directions. Everyone panicked and was running in different directions all we could do for the first few moments was shield ourselves.
Then the crowds thinned and we were able to see our attackers. We started stunning them. Not sure how long it lasted or how many I took out, I stopped when no more spells were coming at me."
"I did the same thing as Ron except the last Death Eater I took out wasn't paying attention to me." Harry said, "He had knocked down a little girl and broke her leg. I stepped between them and…."
"Punched him?" Kingsley asked.
"How could you sort of punch someone?" Nate asked.
"Well he was trying to use the torture curse on her," Harry said, "when I stepped between them I was trying to stun another death eater, which I did. I also held my hand out at the one hurting the girl hoping he would step back some. He didn't and I ended up catching the spell in my hand. Then I stepped towards him and shoved it back into his face."
"What do you mean?" Kingsley asked.
"He caught the spell in his hand," Ron said, "it sort of formed a ball on the palm of his hand then he threw it back and hit the guy in the face."
"How did you catch it?"
Harry shrugged then replied, "Don't know, is the girl ok?"
"Yes she was healed and reunited with her mother then sent home." Nate said, "She kept saying a man had saved her. I promised her mother I would find out who it was and thank him for her."
"If you see her again please tell her I said she is welcome and I hope her daughter is fine." Harry said.
"I need to get back," Nate sighed "do you need anything more from me Minister, I can send a security detail if you want."
"No, I'm fine." Kingsley said, "I'll be here for a while if anyone needs anything from me."
Nate nodded and bid them all goodbye and returned to the Ministry.
After a few moments Ginny walked to Ron and hugged him from behind, "I'm glad you're ok. You may want to write Hermione, when she sees it in the Prophet she'll go ballistic."
"She's getting back tonight." Ron said, "We're supposed to be picking them up at 7:00."
"She found her parents then?" Kingsley asked.
"Yes but they aren't very happy with her right now." Ron said.
"I would imagine not. I'll send a ministry car to pick you up at 6:00. I don't want the two of you running around without an escort today." Ron started to protest but Kingsley continued, "They just sent twenty after you. What if they are regrouping and bringing more. You wouldn't want Hermione's family injured."
Ron nodded. Ginny moved from Ron and sat herself down on Harry's lap and pulled him into a hug, "I' glad you're ok too." Harry wrapped his arms around Ginny and pulled her close burying his face in her neck and breathing slowly.
After several minutes of neither teen moving Bill said, "Ginny do you think you should give Harry some room to breathe?"
Harry said without moving, "I can breathe just fine thanks."
Several faces showed shock but Ron said, "Leave him alone, he's been waiting since the battle for this."
"For Ginny to hug him or Death Eaters to attack?" Charlie asked.
"Both," Ron said, "and for Ginny to forgive him for breaking up with her and for him siding with Mum about how Ginny shouldn't have been fighting in the battle."
"I wasn't mad about either of those. I was mad because you walked out to the forest to let Voldemort kill you." Harry started to speak and Ginny said, "I know you were trying to tell me what happened but I wasn't ready to hear it. I am now, whenever you're ready."
Harry sighed and leaned back, "I was a Horcrux too. I had to let him kill me or he would still be alive."
"How did you know you would live through it?" George asked.
"I didn't, I thought I was going to die."
"But you had the Deathly Hallows," Ron said, "you were the master of death."
"Ron the Deathly Hallows are a myth." Percy said, "Just a story told at bedtime to make kids behave."
Harry pulled out his invisibility cloak and tossed it at Ron, "Mr. Weasley how long do invisibility cloaks last?"
Ron pulled the cloak over himself as Arthur said, "Moody's was about fifteen years old. It was about at its limit."
Ron's disembodied voice said, "This one's been handed down though Harry's family for generations."
"Honestly Ron you are so gullible." Percy said.
"He's telling the truth." Harry said, "Professor Dumbledore knew it was the cloak of the Hallows, he said the maker was Ignatius Peverell, who is my ancestor. His two brothers made the wand, also known as the death stick or elder wand and the stone. Dumbledore's wand was the elder wand, he had won it from Grindlewald and the stone was the item in the snitch Dumbledore wanted me to have. But master of death didn't mean I would live through it. It meant that I would be able to go to my death with my head held high."
"Did the stone work?" George asked.
"Yes, when I got to the edge of the forest I couldn't make it past the dementors." Harry said, "I used the ring and the spirits helped me get past them by acting as a patronus. I dropped the ring after I got past the dementors but I don't know where, and I won't go find it."
"No, the only reason I could let go of it was because I thought I was going to join them soon," Harry said, "and I didn't want the Death Eaters to get it. If I had it I'd be using it. It's too tempting and you remember what happened to the second brother? I can see that being one of the truths of the story. We shouldn't dwell on the dead, they are safe and happy and we will join them soon enough."
"Fred isn't happy." George said, "We were never happy unless we were together."
"He is in no hurry for you to join him." Harry said, "Time doesn't run the same there. I could never tell if I had been there for a few seconds or for days. Besides he can get all the secrets from the marauders before you get there."
"You can't know that." George said, "We don't know who they are so we don't know if they are alive or dead."
"I know who they are." Harry said.
"Wait what are you guys talking about?" Bill asked.
Harry pulled out the map and tapped it saying, "I solemnly swear that I am up to no good." Everyone watched in amazement as Hogwarts castle appeared on the old parchment. Along with the map were the words Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs proudly present the Marauders map.
Charlie whistled, "Where did you get this?"
"Fred and George gave it to me during my third year." Harry said, "They helped me sneak into Hogsmead because my Uncle wouldn't sign my form and no one else could. When Remus caught me with it he took it saying he was protecting me from Sirius. At the end of the year he gave it back to me and explained its significance. Remus was Moony, Peter Pettigrew was Wormtail, Sirius was Padfoot and my Dad was Prongs."
"Makes sense now. So Prongs was your Dad's animagus stag?" George asked and Harry nodded.
Fleur indicated Harry and Ginny and asked, "So are you two back together then?"
Harry looked at Ginny, "Will you be my girlfriend again?"
Ginny leaned in and kissed him. Ron said, "Ugh, did you have to ask that Fleur? Now they're going to be snogging all the time again. You could have at least waited until Hermione got back."
Harry and Ginny had parted so she said, "Why so you could snog Hermione and not have to see us?"
Ron grinned, "Yes."
"So you and Harry are dating?" Ginny nodded and Percy said, "I think he needs to find some other place to stay."
"Percy it is up to your father and I on who lives here and who doesn't." Molly said, "Harry will not move he is staying, and you will stay out of their business. I believe they know how to act appropriately. And if they don't I will deal with it not you."
Percy wanted to argue but stopped. Arthur said, "Ron, Harry why don't you go get cleaned up and rest for a bit. The rest of us will help Molly with dinner."
Ginny gave Harry another kiss then hopped off his lap. Harry stood up and followed Ron up the stairs, before they were out of earshot Ron said, "I told you she'd come round."