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A Morte Molestus

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Death disliked Halloween.

Sure, it had once been rather exciting, fun even. Back when mortals used the time to pay tribute to Death and took advantage of the weakened Barrier to communicate with lost loved ones. But with each year the traditions of old faded away. Few thought of Death, unless they were watching a slasher film. And Death barely bothered to lower the Barrier anymore.

Death blamed commercialization. Mortal businesses had hijacked the day to turn it into an excuse to sell cheap candy and colorful costumes, that frankly freaked Death out.

But on 31 October, 1981 Death passed through the Barrier into the mortal world, something the being rarely did these days.

Death was following the actions of one Tom Marvolo Riddle, or Voldemort, as he prefered. A name that Death got a kick out of, because really, flight of death? Though silly name aside, the man who was currently being proclaimed as the darkest lord in centuries, had caught Death’s attention.

After all, not just anyone would rip their soul apart to avoid Death’s grip, let alone do it multiple times. Talk about overkill, and look who was talking. Plus Death had found the wizard’s exploits to be rather amusing as he ran around terrorizing Britain with his Death Eaters. Death Eaters, another amusing name.

On that night the dark wizard was heading towards Godric’s Hollow all because of a silly prophecy saying that some child would defeat him. Death really needed to have a chat with Fate about these fucking prophecies. All they ever did was mess with shit.

Death appeared in the house that belonged to the Potters just as the flash of green light faded, leaving James Potter lying dead on the floor. With a wave of its hand the man’s soul was collected by Death, though it struggled to return to the world of the living. A struggle it lost of course. Really thought Death, souls were such ungrateful things. It was not often that Death itself reaped a soul. It should be considered a high honor.

Death moved through the house like smoke and watched the woman beg for her child’s life. Useless thought Death as the wand was once again raised. Death collected the woman’s soul before moving to hover over the crib, waiting to claim the last remaining soul in the house.

Death stared down at the child, a babe, just a little over a year old. Barely any sort of existence, especially when compared to the eons Death had surveyed over.

The child was silent, seeming completely unaware of the situation unfolding around him. Though Death assumed that was for the best. Mortals often seemed to think that it was best to die in their sleep so as to not notice the passing. A silly notion really, for Death did not care when the person was struck down, and people tended to notice that they died whether they were awake or not.        

Then the child stirred and opened his eyes, the same green as the curse that had killed his parents, and stared up at Death. No, not at Death, Death quickly amended, for no one could see Death unless allowed. But then something extraordinary happened, impossible, but nevertheless, extraordinary.

The child smiled, and in that moment Death realized that the child could see the being hovering over him. How, thought Death just as the child was bathed in an eerie green light. Death growled in frustration, no longer amused by the one known as Voldemort. With a flick of a bony wrist Voldemort was flung across the room, not dead, at least not entirely. The body that had once housed the little remains of his soul was dead, but that small portion of soul remained, tethered to the mortal world.

Death reached down and clutched the child’s soul in its bony hand and sighed. Such a bright and powerful soul. Death would definitely have to talk to Fate about screwing with mortal affairs. This child, who had somehow seen Death and showed no fear, the one truly interesting thing in years, gone because of a prophecy.

The soul pulsed in Death’s hand, not struggling to break free and Death noticed something within its brightness; a dark spot. And Death laughed, a truly chilling and frightening sound.

Screw you Fate thought Death. This was too interesting an opportunity to pass up. Death hadn’t truly interfered in the lives of mortals in years. Not since the Peverell brothers, though that had been a bit of a disaster. Though entertaining for a little while, people quickly discounted the stories of the Hallows and turned it into a children’s story. A freaking children’s story.

But this, thought Death, this would truly be interesting. Death had led a rather lonely and tiresome existence, not that such thoughts were ever voiced aloud. Sure there was Fate, though she was a bitch, and then there were the reapers. Though they worked under Death and seemed to fear and respect the being equally, which made it rather difficult to have an intelligent conversation with them.

The child however, he could solve this problem. Death called forth one of its reapers just to rip the creature's power from it the moment it arrived, and placed the power into the child’s soul. Then Death released the soul and watched it renter its body.

Harry James Potter. Death wasn’t too fond of the child’s name, it wasn’t very awe inspiring after all. Perhaps the child could go by Hadrian Peverell. That way if he insisted on going by Harry he could and he was descended from the Peverells, which Death found rather fitting. Death would have to work on it.  

This all happened in a matter of seconds, the child’s body hadn’t even begun to cool before jerking back to life.

Death stood watch over the child as a man with long black hair came bursting into the room. The man cradled the woman’s body and sobbed and cried out in agony. Death always found mourning to be both ridiculous and boring. All beings were aware of Death and that they couldn’t escape it, but when it struck nearby, they lost it.

The man stood suddenly and without even glancing at the child, fled from the room. A few minutes later another man entered. He paused in the doorway and stared down at the body of the woman, his face an interesting mixture of grief and anger. He walked past the woman and went to the crib. He let out a small gasp then sobbed in relief at the sight of the still breathing child and lifted the boy into his arms. Death followed them out of the house and watched as the man was stopped by a half-giant.

Death only half listened to their words, too engrossed with the child who hadn’t taken his eyes off of the skeleton figure who grinned it's eternal smile down at him.  

The child was transported from the man to the half-giant who got onto a motorcycle and took off into the air. It quickly became apparent that the man didn’t have a clue how to ride the bike, so with a sigh Death spread his cloak around the bike and its passengers, steadying the ride.

Death was shocked for a moment to feel the power of one of the Hallows, the Elder Wand to be exact, but then Death should have expected Albus Dumbledore to be involved. Maybe Death should try to pay more attention when talking to Fate.

Death watched as Dumbledore talked with the cat woman about leaving the child with his relatives. Death agreed with the cat woman, the child should not be left in their care, but Dumbledore ignored her words and left the child on the doorstep.

Really, thought Death, rather cross, you couldn’t even bother with a warming spell for the poor child.

This would not do thought Death staring down at the now sleeping child. This would not do at all.

Then Death fully stepped through the Barrier into the mortal plain, taking on the appearance of a rather plain looking woman with brown hair and brown eyes. She picked up the child, cradling him in her arms. She plucked the note from his blanket and set it ablaze until nothing remained of it.

Then the two disappeared just to reappear in London in front of a building labeled Wool’s Orphanage. Perfect thought Death, and wonderfully ironic. Though she would make sure that the child’s upbringing was not like his. She walked to the door and set the child down, placing a small card that said Hadrian Peverell within his blankets, then rang the doorbell.

Death watched as the door was answered and the child was brought inside. Now this would be fun thought Death, a ghastly grin spreading across its ancient face.