The survivors of the second wizarding war had very little peace within the next two weeks. The death toll rose as those with grievous injuries passed. When all was said, the time-traveling trio attended seven funerals, though it would have been eight if Hagrid had been able to reschedule Aragog's. Acromantulas had precisely timed rituals for those who died in battle, and they conflicted with Vincent Crabbe's.
"I still don't understand why we went to Vincent Crabbe's funeral," Harry said, scratching the back of his head.
"Because," Hermione rolled her eyes, "the only reason Voldemort killed him was due to the fact he was technically our friend."
"In what world was he our friend?"
"Uh, he came to Siria's birth?"
The boy who lived scowled. "Then why was he on the other side of the field?"
"His dad," Draco said, sighing and rubbing his eyes. "Sirius tried to stall his parental rights, but the man threatened to burn down the school if Vince wasn't in his custody by the end of the hour."
"And was he a death eater?" Luna asked, skipping by the group as they walked.
"I don't know."
The trio and Luna slipped into contemplative silence as they walked up from Hogsmeade toward the currently-in-renovation castle. Harry surveyed the land. The grassy moor rippled as winds licked the four on their way to meet with the rest of the time-traveling-trio sidekick team. As the battle decimated the entirety of their magical government, somehow it had fallen to them to rebuild it. Uncle Severus felt that a meeting to decide roles was best.
The boy-who-lived-many-times-over paused, causing Draco to run into him. He turned and headed toward Hagrid's hut.
"Harry, where are you going?" Hermione asked, running after him.
"Well, there's no point now in keeping our status as time-travelers a secret from the staff. I can finally talk with Hagrid again," Harry explained.
"Hagrid! I had completely forgotten about him."
"I didn't care either way," Draco said, shrugging. Luna came up beside him, slapping him on the shoulder. "What was that for?"
"The nargles said Harry wanted me to do that to you."
"I didn't forget," Harry said sighing. "I realized-back when we were still trying to keep this under-wraps-that Hagrid can't keep a secret to save his life, and he has been in that position multiple times. I felt it best not to put him in that type of position by just not hanging around."
Luckily, they did not have to spend a long time searching. Out in the pumpkin patch, trying to salvage at least a few plants, stood Hagrid.
"'Arry? Is that you?" the half-giant called out, rushing over to hug the boy. "I ne'er thought I'd talk to ya, boy."
Harry grinned sheepishly. "Yea, about that, Hagrid. I wanted to apologize for being so distant."
"Nonsense. Ya had importan' school to do. I shouldn' 'spect you to be 'round much."
"No, Hagrid. I should have been, and I am sorry." The boy hugged his friend, taking in the man's scent. "I promise I will be around more often."
"See that ya do, then," Hagrid said, nodding. "Would you 'n' yer friends like to come in for tea?"
"It would be our pleasure."
An hour later, the four wayward students arrived in the room of requirement. They gaped, staring at the small cabinet office before them. Sirius walked over, handing them each a parchment.
"So, Sirius, can you explain what this is?" Harry asked, holding up the pamphlet. "Because it almost looks like an agenda to me."
"It is," the deputy said bluntly. He grimaced. "He's making me hand these out."
"Severus is fed up with our discussions…"
Hermione's brow furrowed. "You mean rabbit trails?"
"We have a lot to go over, and I do not want to stay up past four in the morning," Severus said, motioning for them to take their seats.
"Like we did at the last meeting?" Neville asked, taking his seat on the council. "I just counted that as another sleepover."
"You don't have a grieving pregnant wife to put to bed."
"Shouldn't she be here?" Hermione asked.
Remus shook his head. "She didn't want to leave her mother alone, and someone had to watch the kids."
"But I feel bad nominating her for the head of the auror department without her here."
"Miss Granger," Severus sat at the head of the table, rubbing his forehead, "for all our sanities, please do not nominate Dora for anything, but especially the head of something."
"Also," Hermione scanned those at the table, "I thought we should institute some sort of nepotism clause, so we ensure that our ministry isn't all related."
The potions master nodded. "I agree, there are far too many redheads…"
"Oi!" Fred and George Weasley said in unison.
"However, we must keep this covert. We are overthrowing a ministry."
"He has a fair point, Hermione," Kingsley said, glancing at the agenda. "Where are we?"
"I believe we should first talk about the newest cabinet positions I just created," Severus said, handing each time-traveler a packet. "Since the three of you-along with myself-are the only ones to know of the identities of all the death eaters in the ministry still alive, you are going to help me root them out of office."
"And how are we doing that?" Draco asked, glaring at the offending packet.
The bushy-haired Gryffindor smirked. "Easy. We can expose them using the Prophet, then gather as many aurors as possible to arrest them."
"And when the majority of the Wizengamot is swept up in these raids, who do you plan on having prosecute them?" Remus asked, leaning back in his chair.
"They're all guilty," Draco said, shrugging. "Why do we need a trial? Let's just throw them all in Azkaban and be done with them."
Sirius and Harry jumped from their seats. "No!"
"Draconus, sweetheart, I hate to break it to you, but they do have the right to innocent until proven guilty," Hermione said, patting his shoulder.
"Since the Magna Carta of 1215."
"And that brings me to another point," Sirius said, slowly sitting back down. "I feel it is high time we get rid of the dementors in Azkaban."
"And how did we get from innocent until proven guilty and the dementors?"
"Cruel and unusual punishment." The animagus shrugged. "And you mentioned Azkaban, and my mind went 'Squirrel'."
Remus shook his head. "I knew I should have walked him before the meeting."
"Yes, now we are all going to have to watch him chase his tail," Regulus said, drumming his fingers lazily on the table.
"I'm serious," the deputy said, frowning.
"Yes, we know."
Severus cleared his throat, shaking the agenda in the air. "Ahem. I do believe dementors and Azkaban are on the list, Black. If you let me follow the plan, it will all flow much more smoothly."
"But by then, we'll be so tired from wading through all the other issues." The man scowled. "Why do we need to discuss the staplers bought for the new minister of magic before we get to whether it's cruel and unusual for people to relive their worst memories over and over again."
"Really, Sirius?" Narcissa asked. "I would have thought you would love destroying your enemies by making them relive their worst memories."
"I wouldn't curse that on my mother."
"And we all know how much you despised mother," Regulus said, examining his fingernails with disinterest. "Can we get this over with?"
"We still haven't discussed, in its entirety, the first of twelve items." Severus crossed his arms. "Who will put these people on trial?"
"We should have interim judges," Hermione said plaintively.
"And who are these interim judges? Us? The other Hogwarts students? Random people we pull off the streets?"
"Maybe we should institute a new minister of magic first," Arthur said, furrowing his brow. "I mean, they would be able to vet the judges we need."
"Correctomundo," Severus muttered. "A word I never thought I'd say and will never say again." He shook his head. "Before we make any other choices, we need to elect a new minister first."
"But shouldn't someone so important be chosen by more than the…" Bill's voice faded as he began a mental tallying, "...twenty people here?"
"My thoughts are we choose an interim minister who will run things for an agreed-upon time until we have enough other positions in place that we can organize a country-wide election," the headmaster explained, leaning back in his chair.
"Well, Professor," Luna began, raising her hand. "Seeing as you already have taken control of this proceeding, would it not make sense for you to be interim-minister of magic?"
"I second that," Percy said. "You're one of the few teachers I actually respected."
"I third that," Harry said, nodding. "You're very responsible, and I want to see the election buttons Draco and I made fly off the shelves: Snape for Minister."
"Made?" Remus asked, brow furrowed. "As in already made?"
"Draco's very good with buttons."
"Moving back to the point of this discussion," Severus said, glaring at his godsons. "As much as I am flattered by your nomination, I am currently rebuilding a castle, trying to find three new teachers for the next year, dealing with parents concerned with safety, finding new investors for Hogwarts, all on top of becoming a father in six months." He shivered slightly. "I have enough on my plate."
Silence filled the room. Each person sat, contemplating their options.
Sirius raised a hand. "I could be interim minister."
"No," the entire room said together.
He lowered his hand. "You didn't have to all agree."
Molly and Narcissa giggled, hiding behind their agendas. Molly nodded, smirking. She turned as Narcissa reddened.
"Kingsley could take over as interim," she suggested, much to the blond woman's horror.
"Molly, I was joking about him commanding a room," she said quickly.
"Mother," Draco whimpered. "Please stop."
"I second the motion," Arthur said, raising a hand.
"Wait? Didn't we see all those 'how to get along with people' books at his apartment?" Harry asked, pinching his lips. "Doesn't that mean he doesn't work well with people?"
"No, that just means he's learning to be the best leader he can," Kingsley said. He leaned forward, scowling. "Why were you going through all my books?"
"That doesn't matter," Sirius said, waving him off. "All that matters is they are perfectly placed back where they belong and in right-order when you get home."
"Wait," Draco sat up straight, "he hasn't gone home yet?"
Kingsley crossed his arms. "Narcissa hasn't lifted the fifty-meter restriction yet."
"Enough," Severus sighed. "All in favor of Shacklebolt as interim minister?" Everyone but Draco raised their hands. "All opposed?" Draco raised his hand. "Majority rules. Movement passes."
Remus shrugged. "Next item on the agenda…"
Fate and time looked around the room. All those once enemies, now friends, plotted and planned their first take over of a massive government. All was as it should have been the first time.
Time turned to Fate. "We did it. We actually did it."
Fate nodded. All was well.