Who: Harry, Hermione, Ron When: Monday Afternoon, after Harry's meet up with the Minister of Magic Where: Grimmauld What: The trio goes locket-hunting Rating: TBA, likely tame Open/Closed: Closed
The wedding was right around the corner, the return to school right after it, and the Burrow was in such a state of constant chaos that Harry was somewhat guiltily glad to escape it. He loved the Weasleys like his own family - but Molly on a tear about the wedding, people flitting in and out, and the stress of trying to figure out the horcruxes and not think about what happened when he left home - it was all headache inducing.
Neither Hermione or Ron was very happy when Harry stuck to his decision to meet with Scrimgeour at the Ministry. But Harry didn't want to just invite the bloke back to the Burrow when he didn't have to and there was already enough going on. Plus it was the Ministry. Voldemort might be making inroads there, but he hadn't taken it over completely. There'd be loads of wizards, Aurors, Unspeakables - people even the Death Eaters weren't stupid enough to make a move in front of. It was broad daylight in a busy Ministry - it wasn't like the nighttime attack in the Department of Secrets. He'd be fine.
Of course the whole thing proved bloody useless anyway. The Minister tried to tell him that he had no business being given the Sword of Gryffindor - which Harry hadn't even known Dumbledore tried to give him anyway, as it wasn't Dumbledore's to give away. Scrimgeour spent loads of time asking questions about the other gifts the three of them received, plainly trying to figure out what they meant, and hinting about Harry's Duty, and how if he wanted to respect his parents' sacrifice, he should support the Ministry now.
Harry had wanted to deck him. As if the Ministry had ever supported him, or Dumbledore. Fudge might have been the one who denied Voldemort's return, but Scimgeour hadn't done a bloody thing to try to fix it. Things just kept getting worse, and the man somehow implied it was Harry's fault. Harry had enough guilt, he didn't need to deal with what the Minister was trying to lay on him.
He'd refused, been close mouthed, and finally just threatened to leave. When the Minister had pushed at him to choose loyalty to the Ministry over Dumbledore, whom he implied was senile and aged, Harry flatly told him he was Dumbledore's man, and left.
So overall a wasted morning.
Harry'd floo'd back, told Ron and Hermione he'd talk to them at Grimmauld, and then they'd snuck out. More or less. Harry was nervous about leaving - more because he knew the lengths people had gone to to get him safely at the Burrow than for himself, really. But he went anyway, and they managed to apparate safely near the familiar, unplottable safety of Grimmauld, and get inside without incident. The house remained as grim and gloomy as ever, but at least they were relatively safe there. "We went all over this house when we stayed here, Hermione," he told her, wand still in hand. Just in case. "Any idea where else to look?" In retrospect, Harry couldn't believe they hadn't sussed it out sooner. R.A.B. Sirius' brother.
Harry just wished Sirius was still there. He'd known his brother after all, even if he'd talked about him like he was written off completely. He'd have some idea how the man thought.