“Now the Bubble-Head Charm can be immensely useful for a quick oxygen supply. Not only can it be used to breathe underwater but also will provide clean air in any type of air pollution,-“Professor Flitwick stopped his lecture as Professor McGonagall walked into his Charm classroom.
“I’m deeply sorry Professor, but may I borrow Ms. Potter for a moment?” McGonagall asked.
“Yes of course! Potter?” Holly got up from her desk and quickly joined McGonagall in the hallway.
“Sorry to pull you from your studies Ms. Potter but your presence is needed in the Head Master’s office.” Professor McGonagall apologized.
“Oh no worries Professor, I’ve learned Bubble-Head Charms ages ago” Holly replied. She was intrigued why the professor had taken her out of class and her curiosity grew when she saw Hermione, Ginny, Luna, Neville, and other students who had fought in the Battle of Hogwarts in the room as well. Once Holly took a spot next to Hannah Abbott, Professor McGonagall addressed the small crowd in the office.
“My apologies for taking you out of your classes but this is an urgent matter. A few hours ago I received an owl from the Minister for Magic summoning every witch and wizard who fought in the Battle of Hogwarts to the Ministry at once for an announcement. If you will all travel there now, through the fireplace, you will find yourselves at the Ministry. I will remain here for when…if you wish to return and to tell the professors who have to stay what the Minister’s announcement is.” And with that, Professor McGonagall flicked her wand to her fireplace and green flames appeared. One by one the students bent into the fireplace and their forms soon disappeared. As Holly went into the fireplace she sent a questioning glance at McGonagall just shook her head and kept her lips tightly sealed.
“Thank you all for coming in such short notice.” Kingsley Shacklebolt said, addressing the crowd in front of him. He stood on a raised platform in the Ministry of Magic Atrium. His face was grim and an aged scroll levitated in the air beside him. “I come to you with grave news. A law was called to my attention by an employee in the Wizengamot Administration Services department. This employee had participated in the First Wizarding War and remembered the last time the law came into effect.” Kingsley cleared his throat, obviously awkward and dreading what he was about to say next. He took the scroll from beside him and read it aloud.
“Every witch or wizard who is above seventeen years of age and has rendered their services in the First Wizarding War and/or (god forbidding) Wizarding Wars after, must marry-“ At this many angry mutters started throughout the crowd. Holly held her breath as Kingsley continued. “-must marry within a year of the war. The marriage must be to a person of magical blood so as to replenish the population and repair the damage the war has caused. The couple must have one child within their first two years of marriage and a second child within four years of their marriage. Now-“ He was cut off again by the crowd.
“This is bullshit!” Fred Weasley said in a loud voice. Many others agreed with him. The crowd of survivors had a mixture of angry and shocked faces. Holly looked around quickly but didn’t catch Draco’s face in the crowd. Beside her Ron and Hermione were grasping hands so tightly their knuckles turned white and Luna and Neville glanced at each other awkwardly.
“Settle down, settle down!” An elderly wizard stood beside Kingsley and tried to quiet down the crowd. “I know this is quite peculiar and many of you may feel this is unfair. However, this law worked very well the first time it was implemented and therefore is implemented again. This generation is luckier than the last. For the First Wizarding War, this law was implemented a few years before it finished.”
“Well I guess that explains why our parents were only 20 when they had us eh Hol?” Harry’s voice said from behind his twin. She turned to him and saw he was joined by Ginny, Fred, and George.
“Mom said we’re all meeting at the Burrow when this is all over to figure stuff out” Ginny added. Holly nodded and then slid past her to grab the arm of a blonde haired young man in the crowd.
“Holly! Are you-“ Draco’s question was silenced by Holly’s lips on his.
“We’ll talk at the Burrow.” She told him and led him back to the group.
“If anyone has any questions or needs assistance finding a marriage partner please contact the newly created Coupling and Marriage Department here at the Ministry.” Kingsley was saying over the crowd. Holly took that as their cue to leave and led the group to an unoccupied fireplace. She stepped in and said loudly into the flames ‘The Burrow!’