Quite unlike Albus's past experiences with waiting, time seemed to pass extraordinarily fast. If asked to recall the week-and-a-half after receiving his father's letter, Albus would find himself quite unable to properly recall it.
Rose had already finished her book and written to her parents about how fantastic it was. She had already started studying for exams. And she had even started to take up knitting during her short breaks from studying. (She wasn't very good.)
He could remember Lily saying, "Well, seems you've lucked out. You don't have to embarrass yourself by inviting someone with a boyfriend to Hogsmeade this time," which Al thought was a bit below the belt.
But other than that, he couldn't remember much. Roxanne reminding him not to forget about Quidditch, Professor Vector asking to see some sort of chart... Nothing could quite be filed as important, particularly in comparison to what he was imagining to happen sometime soon.
Quite honestly, Albus didn't think even his luck (or lack thereof) could present him with a chimaera. What he wasn't quite so relaxed about was how this would actually work out. Obviously they weren't too happy with a single intruder. What would they think of half a dozen? Surely they wouldn't come to the conclusion that they were wizards trying to help improve the relationship between the communities.
And how would they even get there? The Knight Bus again? They didn't seem all that pleased to have to make a journey across the Atlantic Ocean. The Floo Network? Would that even work? Did they have the Floo Network there? Obviously they couldn't travel by broomstick, and if they suggested Apparation, Albus might have died laughing before they made it to another suggestion.
He found out on a pleasant day-warm and sunny, Albus couldn't think about how lovely it would have been to spend hours and hours walking down the streets of Hogsmeade. He and Rose had walked down to the village together, separating when Hogsmeade station at last came into view.
"Good luck!" Rose told him. "Don't do anything stupid, or you'll be spending the summer holidays there as well trying to sort out whatever you did now."
"Thanks for the vote of confidence, Rose. I really appreciate that."
"It will probably be fine," she said. "Well, I'll be off, then. I think Tomes and Scrolls is having a sale on all books over fifteen sickles."
"See you later then," said Al, looking over hopelessly at the newly arrived train. "S'pose they're here..."
With that, Rose dashed off to Tomes and Scrolls, black robes blowing wildly behind her like some sort of deformed kite.
Forty-five minutes, a rather uncomfortable Knight Bus armchair, and what looked rather like a poorly attended family reunion later, Albus, his father, Ron, Victoire, and several other Ministry employees found themselves on the very same street Al recalled seeing two teenagers in an apartment holding swords.
Somehow, it seemed someone in the Ministry had been perfectly aware of demigods in North America, for things appeared oddly calm. They'd certainly read the book mentioning monsters, and they'd certainly noticed the bit about them being dangerous—from Victoire, of the Beast division, to Arnold Booth of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes, it looked as though there was at least one person from a third of the Ministry.
That would certainly convince the two that these invaders meant no harm whatsoever, wouldn't it? Foolproof plan this was. Let's all waltz into the dwelling of weapon-carriers—brilliant plan, no?
Apparently it was, for it seemed no issue at all to stroll to the door and simply ask, for a kind-looking woman this time appeared, and seemed not at all startled by their intrusion.
Was this plan more thought out than Albus had expected? Or was it simply wishful thinking?
No, the blue cupcakes she offered didn't lie. She must have been told… Of course, how the Ministry managed this was still a bit fuzzy, but as the blonde girl and what must have been the woman's son—Annabeth and Percy, was it?—stepped into the room… Well, he'd work it out later.
"So," said someone who Albus guessed must have been a high-ranking Ministry official, "tell us about yourselves. I assume you were warned about us coming here?"
"Oh, um, yeah." Percy clearly didn't know quite what to say. "I'm Percy Jackson."
"I'm Annabeth Chase," the blond girl added. "And you," she said, pointing at Albus's father, "are a fictional character."
"You were on that book… in the Empire State Building, the guard had a copy of Harry Potter, and, um, it looks like that's you. You were supposed to die too, right? Prophecy?"
"You have prophecies too?" a woman in dark robes asked quickly, startling Albus; she had seemed so quiet that Al had assumed she would not speak at all, but perhaps take notes.
"We don't just have an Oracle for the fun of it."
"Oracle? Don't you have Seers?"
"Well, a few mortals can see through the Mist—"
Annabeth sighed, as though she had explained this a thousand times already. "It makes mortals perceive things differently, so it makes sense. Like monsters and such."
Albus took notice of Victoire's eagerness to write this down, and of his uncle's mutter of, "Well, that would've been useful."
"Anyway, some mortals can see past that. And they generally are the people who become Oracles."
And so it went on, with questions and answers and questions and answers until it seemed that everyone ought to have run out of breath.
The boy—Percy Jackson—seemed to find Albus's father very amusing, while the girl—Annabeth Chase—seemed mostly to be analyzing the group's every move, as though preparing for battle.
Albus sincerely hoped that it would not come to that.
In just over an hour, he was able to at last breathe a sigh of relief. No weapons had been drawn, and no one seemed traumatized by the event, which was more than he could say about several family dinners.
So as he arrived at Hogwarts that evening, and spoke to Rose—who had been slightly upset by having to put down her book, but quite happy to hear what had happened—he felt only slightly smug. After all, Lily was certainly disappointed by the lack of chaos.
AN: Many apologies for the poor editing, shortness, and most of all the long wait. NaNo-ing and, well, life. I sincerely hope that you enjoyed this final chapter, despite the previously mentioned issues. If you didn't (or if you did), perhaps I could make up for it by writing something you'd like to read. Pretty much anything rated K-T for either of these fandoms (or both again) and a few others. Though it's fairly likely I wouldn't give it to you before December. Anyway, thank you for reading. And off to write for NaNoWriMo! (7,000 more words!)