As you may have guessed, I own neither HP nor DP. My only possession is this strange little one-shot that took up residence in my head yesterday and needed to be exorcised. Hope you enjoy.
When Kingsley Shacklebolt became Minister of Magic, one of the first things he did was take a tour of his new domain. He needed several inventories, lists of what was wrong and what he had to fix it with.
For instance, the statue. The foul thing had to go. He would hire an artist, perhaps that Thomas boy he'd met through Potterwatch, to design something completely different from the Magic is Might statue and the Fountain of Magical Brethren. It would be something good, something that encouraged equality and tolerance instead of wizarding superiority.
And the Blood Registries would burn. It would be a public burning, a fierce statement that the new Ministry would no longer tolerate any pureblood nonsense.
By the time he reached the Department of Mysteries, the new Minister was exhausted but determined not to show it.
Several false studies had come out of this particular department, each claiming that Muggle-borns were magic thieves (a hypothesis that completely contradicted findings which had stood steady for hundreds of years) and that purebloods were as perfect as the Aryans. He put those on the to-be-destroyed list and began exploring the actual department itself. Beside him, Percy Weasley scribed lists of items.
The halls were deserted save for the two wizards until they reached the Time Room. A frustrated-looking witch stood there, hands on hips, muttering to herself. "That's the third time this year! By Merlin, when I find out who's doing this…."
"Doing what?" Kingsley asked in his slow, deep voice.
The woman nearly jumped out of her skin. "Minister!" she cried. "I- I didn't see you there. So sorry, so sorry, didn't mean to offend."
"You didn't," he assured her. "But what happened here?"
His question was justified; the Time Room was a mess. Shattered glass and sandy dust coated the floor. The wooden shelves had rotted all the way through, creating puddles of pulpy goo near the walls. The chamber smelled strange: old and cold and… angry.
The witch huffed a sigh. "That's just it. Nobody knows. We… how long do you have, Minister?"
"As long as it takes," he replied. Sleep and supper were overrated anyways.
The Unspeakable conjured a trio of chairs. She and her guests sat down. Percy took out another sheet of parchment, just in case he needed to record something. "As you might know, Minister, we first began the study of time back in the early eighteen hundreds, when the first Time Turners were found."
"Found?" he repeated. "I thought you made them?"
She shook her head. "No. We found them, thirteen little hourglass charms just sitting in the Death Chamber. They just appeared one morning with a note. I'd show it to you, but it vanished the next day. It said, These will allow you to walk counterclockwise through the hours. Use them wisely, but meddle no more in the affairs of time. The only signature was a pair of initials, C.W., but no one knew who that might be.
"The early Unspeakables quickly discovered what Time Turners could do, so we set up a subdivision to learn more about time and how we could use it to benefit wizardkind. They had just finished furnishing the first Time Room when they came to work and found it completely destroyed.
"They tried again and again to set up a suitable study area, but whenever it was nearly complete, the same thing would happen. They tried everything- night watches, changing rooms, every ward in the book- but nothing worked. We even leaked a false story to the Prophet about all the Time Turners being destroyed and us discontinuing research on time, but as you can see, that hasn't worked either." She indicated their surroundings, face crumpled with despair.
"And this hasn't happened to any of your other projects?" Shacklebolt asked.
The witch nodded. "Only the temporal projects have been affected. But it makes no sense! Whoever's doing it should be dead by now, or at the very least too old to do anything. And now they've done it again!" She flapped her arms wildly, almost ready to cry.
Kingsley could feel the beginning of a headache, but he knew what he had to do. As the Unspeakable had said, the culprit had to be very old by now. He didn't have much time (pun not intended).
"Weasley, give me your quill and parchment. You- ah, what's your name?"
"Unspeakable Abbot, go gather up the remaining Time Turners. Weasley, go home, get some sleep. You deserve it."
They left, but he remained behind. He had a letter to write.
Blue flowed over the world, tinting everything cerulean. Even clouds of dust, stirred up by Kingsley and Evangeline's abrupt departure, froze in midair, glinting like tiny snowflakes in the unnatural luminescence.
The cyan covered the world, north pole to south, Beijing to Borneo to Boston. All was still, raindrops and bullet trains and children shifting in their sleep.
Only one thing moved in the vast silence, a fluttering cloth, and that was through no fault of its own. Someone was coming through it, only being able to truly access this stretched-out moment.
Clockwork floated into the Department of Mysteries through the Veil of Death. His face was completely impassive, still as the time stream around him.
He glanced back at the portal through which he'd come. It had stilled again, the fabric frozen in strange, eerie shapes. "Reverse," he told it, and though its appearance didn't change, it transformed. Before, it had been a one-way portal from the Ghost Zone to Earth. Now it went the opposite way, providing the ghost a way back home.
The spirit glided through the halls to the Time Room, where his stern visage cracked into a tiny smile. For once, his destruction of all their artifacts might not have been in vain.
Still, he would miss blasting things to oblivion and accelerating the aging of the wood. It was an excellent stress reliever after a long day with the Observants. Ah, well, he'd eventually find another form of therapy.
The old specter with a child's face picked up Shacklebolt's note.
I know not who you are or how you created the Time Turners, but the people of Wizarding Britain are in your debt. You provided us with tools that were essential in keeping Grindelwald's forces off British soil and keeping my people safe during times of peace. However, I am ashamed that we did not accept your gifts with gratitude and obey your one condition, to not delve deeper into the workings of time. On behalf of the Ministry of Magic, I offer my most sincere apologies and my assurances that we will not study time until I am no longer Minister, at the very least, and hopefully longer. Here are the remaining eleven Time Turners. The other two, as you undoubtedly know, have been destroyed. Do with them as you will.
Clockwork's smile widened. Finally, a Minister with some sense. Shacklebolt had grasped immediately what generations of Unspeakables had failed to realize: time was too dangerous to fiddle with, save in the most extreme of circumstances.
These fools at the Department had no respect for his domain. If they'd had their way, they would have used time magic for everything from preventing splinters to fitting extra classes into a schoolgirl's schedule. They had used it that way. He'd given them the turners, yes, but only so the mysterious objects had a place of origin when they needed to be used. They were meant as defensive weapons, ways of keeping Britain from falling apart at the seams during its many internal turmoils.
The ghost glanced into the future. Yes, Kingsley would keep his word. The Unspeakables would whine and waffle, but he would force them- fitting, for the man who would become the best Minister in history.
He plucked up the Time Turners, pocketed the Minister's note, and vanished.
Kingsley was pleasantly surprised when he woke up fully refreshed. It had been a long two days, first with the Battle of Hogwarts and then with his inventorying. He'd expected to be exhausted by yet another early morning, but it felt as though he'd been sleeping twelve or thirteen hours.
The wizard stretched, thinking about what to do next. He should probably close the Ministry… no, people needed that… he should move them to a new location and have a grand reopening at the old headquarters. Yes, that would be perfect. All he needed was a location.
He reached for his wand, which he always kept on a night table beside his bed. Instead of the smoothly polished wood, his fingers closed around something cool and oddly shaped.
It was a Time Turner… and a note.
The Minister swung his body around, heart pounding. He hadn't expected C.W. to respond so quickly. The missive read,
Congratulations on your well-deserved appointment. Use the last Time Turner as you will. I trust that you will do so wisely.
The Minister stared at it for a long, long moment. Then, smiling, he hung the delicate golden chain around his neck.
His tasks were still daunting, but they suddenly seemed a great deal less arduous. After all, time itself was on his side.
This is quite possibly the only HP/DP crossover in which neither of the series' title characters appear. It's all background characters. Hope you enjoyed it anyways, though.