Hogwarts was even weirder than before after the law came into effect. Almost half the remaining 6th/7th years had left the school to prepare for their wedding or move into the houses of their fiancés. The number of people in hysterics (mainly girl) rose drastically as the stress of finding a husband became almost impossible. The Coupling and Marriage department in the Ministry had created a sort of matchmaker program to help singles find marriage partners as quickly as possible. Holly had written to Anna Lockwood right after she left The Burrow and didn’t hear back from her until a few weeks afterwards.
Holly hastily opened the letter addressed to her as she ate breakfast in the Great Hall with Ginny.
So nice to hear from you! I’ve actually been living in London for a few years now (in secret for reasons you obviously know). I’d love to catch up and meet this Fred Weasley. The Ministry is making me marry as well. Something about proving my citizenship or something, balderdash if you ask me! Looking forward to seeing you my blonde bombshell!
Kisses! Anna XOXO
“Well she seems…interesting” Ginny commented, reading the letter over Holly’s shoulder.
Holly laughed, “Anna’s definitely a character that’s for sure! We used to run circles around Arthur Abbott years ago” She shook her head laughing to herself at the memory. “Hannah!”
Hannah Abbott was hurrying down the aisle between the house tables with a worried look on her face. She glanced quickly at Holly and slowed down.
“What’s wrong Hannah?” Ginny asked. Hannah looked on the verge of tears.
“I-I’m just really stressed right now” Hannah replied looking downcast. She blinked back tears and continued with Ginny and Holly’s prodding, “It’s just this stupid law and the wedding. My father is stretched thin as it is with money since my mother passed away and Neville’s family was never very wealthy. I just don’t think I can finish my education. I’m looking for a job right now but no one will hire me”
Ginny consoled Hannah and suggested she try places in Diagon Alley or the Leaky Cauldron. Holly didn’t join in the conversation but sat there thinking hard. ‘More people’s lives left in ruin from the war and they have nobody to help them’ she thought to herself. She was interrupted by a letter landing in her lap. She picked it up and curiously looked at the handwriting. Holly opened it and read silently.
“What’s wrong Holly?” Ginny asked after Hannah left with a slight bounce to her step.
Holly looked at her grimly, “It’s Andromeda”
“Ahhh peek-a-boo! Peak…a-boo!” Holly played with little Teddy on the floor of Andromeda’s living room while Draco handed her a cup of tea. The couple had paid Andromeda a visit after Holly got Harry’s letter. He had been trying to visit his godson as much as possible but work was getting in the way and Andromeda tired easily. She was getting along in her years and keeping up with a growing baby was hard work by yourself.
“And you’re sure you don’t mind looking after him?” Tonks’ mother asked as she put her coat on. She had finished her tea and was about to pay a relaxing visit to an old friend a few towns over.
“Go, go, he’ll be fine with us!” Holly said waving her on
“Don’t worry about a thing, we need as much practice as possible before our own babies come” Draco said reassuringly. Holly gulped nervously; they hadn’t talked about that aspect of the law yet. To her relief Draco didn’t speak further on it and instead joined her on the floor. They played with Teddy for a few hours until Holly put him down for a quick nap. She just got him settled when someone knocked on the door.
“Oh…uh hi” Holly heard Draco’s awkward voice say from the nursery. She went into the living room curiously.
“Oh Harry! Nice to see you!” Holly said walking over to hug her twin. The familiar static electricity of their touch cracked through the air and the floor lamps lit up and the fan on the ceiling turned on. Much to Holly’s dismay they didn’t get the power of twin telepathy like she hoped. But it was always something different when the Potter twins touched; about a month ago they made the kettle whistle even though Mrs. Weasley had just put it on and a few weeks ago they started the engine in Mr. Weasley’s car.
“Thanks for coming and helping out Hol” Harry said while running an anxious hand through his already messy hair. “I’d come over more but work has been so hectic lately”
“Still can’t find that one guy in the mountains?” Holly asked. Harry and Ron were Aurors in charge of capturing the few remaining Death Eaters who managed to flee the Battle of Hogwarts.
Harry shook his head, “Not yet. They had to pull us out after Dean almost got killed from a Yeti. We’re set to go back in soon. Andromeda is just run off her feet though. She’s getting on in her years and a young baby is a lot to handle”
Holly nodded in agreement. “It’s awful how she doesn’t get any support from the Ministry.” She left the room to check on Teddy and when the returned Harry and Draco were discussing Draco’s new job.
“So how do you like working with Mr. Weasley?” Harry was asking. Mr. Weasley had asked Draco is he wanted to work in his department at the Ministry, helping people distinguish between actual Dark Magic threats and hoaxes.
“It’s really interesting” Draco replied, “I went out on a call with him just yesterday and we stopped this one young couple from eating a Venomous Tentacula plant they thought would make them invisible to Death Eaters.”
“Did you hear about the family they found by Smithville? Third one this month” Harry asked. Draco shook his head in dismay but Holly was confused to what they were talking about.
“What family? Third to do what?” She asked her fiancé and her brother.
“I guess you haven’t been reading the Prophet at Hogwarts.” Harry replied looking slightly shocked, “It’s the third family the Ministry has found dead.” Holly’s face was pure shock at his words.
“Yeah, I guess the first two didn’t have enough money for their heating bill and they froze to death. Their parents died in the Battle and they never learned how to create a fire. The other one burned their house down because they used Fiendfyre.” Draco added. When he mentioned the cursed spell both he and Harry cringed. Both knew only too well how terrible the spell was.
“That’s terrible!! All of these families being affected by the war but nobody’s helping them! Andromeda, Siobhan, now these families…it’s disgusting.” Holly said shaking her head.
“Siobhan?” Harry and Draco looked at each other confused but Holly ignored them; the wheels were turning in her head.
“I know how to fix this” Holly said almost to herself. She silently went over to the table and starting writing on a scrap of parchment. Draco and Harry glanced at each other and shrugged their shoulders. Holly walked past them and attached her finished letter to Andromeda’s owl. The boys managed to see the first few words that were on the letter before the owl flew out the window.
Minister for Magic