This was, without doubt, the worst weekend of Harry’s entire life.
That itself was pretty impressive, as Harry’s life hadn’t been all that great from the beginning. His parents had died in a demon attack when he had only been a year old, and instead of growing up in the magical world, he had been shipped off to his muggle relatives. Ten years in hell had shaped him enough to suspect foul play when a giant man had broken into his relatives’ house and declared him to be a wizard.
But a few magic tricks later (performed with a pink umbrella, of all things) he had agreed to go with Hagrid, as the giant had introduced himself. Mostly because one look at his uncle’s red face had told him that staying would end in a world of pain and bruises. So Harry had instead chosen to enter a world of magic and wonders.
Because no one had thought it important to tell him that the magical world had a severe infestation problem, with butt-ugly demons running around all over the place and killing people.
“It’s because magic has been gifted to us by angels.” Hermione, a muggleborn who somehow didn’t think this was completely insane, explained earnestly. “And the devil is punishing us by sending his demons after us.”
“And why aren’t those angels taking some responsibility for the mess they created and fight those demons by themselves? Or at least, you know, help us?” Harry had asked, glaring at a venomous sunflower and wondering how the fuck gardening was supposed to help him kill demons.
Hermione had frowned. “Well… it’s our responsibility now, isn’t it? They gave us power, and with that comes –“
At that point, Harry had simply walked away because fuck that, he believed neither in angels nor in Spiderman, so really, he didn’t have to listen to this.
Harry had wondered if he could still quit this show, when it had been revealed to him that he was prophesied to somehow kill all the demons and close the portal to the underworld.
All by himself.
Harry had looked at his scrawny, fourteen-years old self and snorted. Bonkers, all of them. Completely crazy. It did explain his popularity however, and it was incredibly amusing to watch everyone fall all over themselves to make nice with him.
Harry was sixteen when the leader of the British magical world, Dumbledore (who was also Harry’s headmaster and, in Harry’s opinion, completely mental), realized that maybe, just maybe, a teenager with a sub-par magical education wasn’t equipped to save the world from all demons of the underworld.
Dumbledore then decided that the logical conclusion to draw was that Harry had to be sacrificed to the Devil in order to make the Lord of the Underworld happy and maybe the whole demon problem would, you know, go away then.
Not so great.
So here Harry was, dressed in nothing but a white dress (fuck this ‘ritual robes’ shit, this was a dress, and not even a fancy one), tied to a stone table and still groggy after being drugged in his sleep.
Dumbledore and his cronies were standing around him in a circle, faces solemn and chanting something in Latin.
Definitely Harry’s worst weekend ever.
Then, there was silence, only for it to be broken by Dumbledore’s voice.
“My friends, we live in dark times. War is upon us, and in war, we have to make sacrifices. Young Harry is brave and noble enough to-“
“Fuck you, Dumbledore!” Harry shouted angrily, his voice embarrassingly croaky. “Cut those ropes and I’ll bravely and nobly beat your bloody face in!”
“- to give his life so ours might be saved-“ Dumbledore continued talking, completely unfazed.
“I’ll come back and kill you all myself!” Harry fumed, struggling against the ropes.
“The prophecy will be fulfilled.” Dumbledore said gravely. “Harry Potter’s sacrifice will calm the Devil and he will close the portal to his kingdom.”
“Fuck the prophecy!” Harry screeched. “Fuck all of you, I’ll fucking send the Devil down here, watch me, I’ll-“
And then there was light, and maybe some trumpets, Harry wasn’t quite sure, and the cold of the ritual chamber was replaced by the warmth of a nearby fireplace.
“I swear to God if those assholes actually sent me to hell…” Harry muttered, refusing to open his eyes.
“Please don’t say that name down here.” a deep, male voice said, amusement clearly audible.
Harry’s eyes flew open and he sat up, staring at the man standing a few feet before him. He was dressed completely in black, his eyes were glowing red and there were honest-to-… Devil? …fucking horns peaking out of his tousled, black hair.
“Fuck, they actually succeeded?” Harry said disbelievingly.
“Did Dumbledore and his little friends sacrifice you in an archaic ritual and sent you to hell, at the feet of the Devil?” the man mused. “Yes. Did they succeed? No.”
Harry frowned. “What’s that supposed to mean?” he asked wearily.
The man… the Devil??? – this was so surreal. The Devil grinned wickedly. “Well, you see, I’m not completely unreasonable. I made a deal will Father Almighty up there centuries ago, that if an honestly good person is sacrificed to me, I allow their soul to ascend to heaven and all that, while I get to reap the souls of the people who performed the ritual.”
“Seriously?” Harry asked, eyes wide.
“Seriously.” the Devil nodded. “Sacrificing someone against their will? Kind of a shitty thing to do.”
Harry slowly stood up, realizing with a scowl that he was still wearing the stupid white dress. “Is that… is that like… a thing? Does this happen so often that it was actually more efficient to make a deal with heaven?!” Harry stared at the Devil. “What’s wrong with people?!”
The Devil shrugged. “Yeah, surprisingly enough it happens quite regularly. Though, normally the sacrifices are girls. And virgins.” He winked at Harry.
Winked at him.
Seriously, what the fuck.
Harry narrowed his eyes. “Well, sorry to disappoint, then.” he bit back.
“Oh, you don’t.” the Devil assured him in a manner, that really wasn’t reassuring at all.
Harry couldn’t help but look the Devil over. He was… well. Incredibly handsome, really. All tall, dark and menacing, right up Harry’s alley. Shame about him being the Lord of the Underworld and all that, if he’d been human and Harry had been still alive, he’d have hit that.
Right. He was dead.
“I’m dead.” Harry said slowly. “Those fuckers actually killed me. Wow.” He looked around, not quite sure what to do with himself.
The Devil watched him for a moment, before sighing impatiently and conjuring a… a telephone out of thin air. “Yes, well, no matter how delightful your presence is, a deal is a deal. Let me just call up someone upstairs, and you’ll be escorted to heaven immediately.”
“Uh… thanks.” Harry replied, watching as the Devil dialled a number.
The Devil simply nodded and then looked down at his fingernails in boredom, while a dialling tone suddenly filled the silence around them.
Harry stared at the telephone, willing the call to connect.
The Devil leaned back against… was that a throne? Made out of skulls?!
Harry’s eyes darted up and he froze as his gaze met the red one of the Devil.
The Devil smirked.
Harry scoffed and looked away.
Harry cleared his throat and wondered why awkwardness followed him even into his afterlife. Surely, there were rules against something like that?
“Your call could not be connected, please check the number and try again.”
Harry groaned, while the Devil simply rolled his eyes at the telephone.
“So what now?” Harry asked cautiously.
The Devil sighed, vanishing the telephone with a careless wave of his hand. “This always happens. They are so busy, accepting all those prayers and meanwhile, I’m stuck babysitting the newest sacrifice of the week!”
“The week?!” Harry exclaimed. He was getting slightly miffed. This whole being-sacrificed-to-the-devil-deal had been a true changing point in his life, what with being betrayed by everyone and getting murdered in a ritual, but apparently, his situation wasn’t all that special.
The Devil grinned at him. “Don’t worry, darling, you’ve been my favourite so far. Your life has been highly amusing, and I’m actually quite happy to meet you before you ascend to heaven and all that.”
To his horror, Harry felt himself blush. To cover it up, he glared at the Devil. “You spied on me?! Are you some kind of stalker?!”
The Devil lost his grin and glared at him. “I am the Lord of the Underworld, God of destruction and death, the Devil, Lucifer, the Morningstar, an immortal being too powerful for you to understand!”
Harry forced himself to keep standing straight, instead of cowering at the feet of the furious being before him. “You are a drama queen. A drama queen who hasn’t even denied being a stalker.” he informed the Devil with a glare, secure in the knowledge that he would be sent up to heaven at one point, so really, what was the worst that could happen? “And I’m gonna call you Tom.”
The Devil – Tom – stared at him, mouth hanging open, before visibly forcing himself to regain posture. “You can’t call me that.” he informed Harry coldly.
“What? Tom?” Harry pressed further. He’d never had a good impulse control, and apparently being dead didn’t help either. “I think it suits you. Tooooom.”
The Devil glared at him before abruptly turning away and walking out of what Harry now realized was some kind of study. Harry took the fact that he hadn’t been tortured yet or thrown into some kind of pit of despair as encouragement and followed after him.
“What about Tommy?” he asked as they passed by a wide-eyed reaper. “Or maybe Tomtom?”
“No.” the Devil snarled.
“Tomtom. Toommm. Tooommm-aaatooeee.” Harry sung quietly.
They arrived in front of a different room and the Devil flung the door wide open, shoving Harry inside. Harry looked around curiously, but instead of some kind of torture instrument, he only saw a large muggle TV and what appeared to be a game console in front of it. There was also a bed in one corner, and a desk with a few books on it.
It honestly was a perfectly nice room.
Behind him, the door closed. Harry turned around, only to stumble backwards as he realized how close the Devil was standing behind him.
“You are…” the Devil seethed. “Insufferable.”
Harry shrugged. “I mean… can you blame me? My life was fucked up.”
The Devil glared at him for a few more seconds before huffing in annoyance. Though Harry could have sworn there was a twinkle of amusement in those red eyes.
“Well, I’m sure I know how to entertain you while we wait for some trumpet-playing angel to get their ass down here and pick you up.”
Harry’s eyes involuntarily darted towards the bed in the corner, and he blushed again. Tom frowned and looked over there as well, before chuckling and turning Harry towards the TV.
“Don’t be ridiculous, you are a child.”
“I’m sixteen!” Harry protested, angry at himself for feeling a weird mix of relieved and disappointed. Death certainly hadn’t killed his libido, and as he had thought before: he’d hit that. You know, if he were sure that he’d survive the experience.
“Exactly.” Tom said. He walked around Harry and with a flick of his wrist the TV turned on.
“So what, we’re going to play video games?” Harry asked disbelievingly.
Tom managed to look elegant while sitting down on the floor, which just wasn’t fair to anyone, and smirked. “Something like that. Sit down.”
Harry rolled his eyes at the demanding tone, but sat down next to the Devil and picked up the second game pad.
The TV showed a loading screen for a moment before a world map appeared. Tom quickly selected England, and the scene switched to a random street in what appeared to be Wizarding London.
“So how do I play this game?” Harry asked.
“Well.” Tom drawled. “Obviously we are demons-“
“And I would suggest we see if we can find some of your old friends. Pay them a visit, so to say.”
Harry stared at the Devil.
He stared at the TV where one of the demons waited patiently for orders. His orders.
He stared at the game pad in his hands.
“These are real demons, aren’t they.”
“Hmm.” Tom hummed positively.
Harry took a deep breath. “You are telling me that I can control a real demon through this video game, and what happens on that screen happens on Earth, right now? And you suggest I should use this game to find my old friends, the people who betrayed me, Dumbledore… and I should kill them with this demon… avatar?”
Tom looked at him, for the first time appearing slightly worried. “Well… I thought you’d may enjoy…”
“Are you fucking kidding me?!” Harry hissed excitedly. “This is the best fucking thing ever! You are a genius!”
Harry turned his attention towards the screen, gleefully trying out all the buttons of the game pad in his hands. He quickly figured out how to make his demon run, and after turning it around a few times and managing to pull up a map from the game menu, he quickly pointed it towards a hide out of his former allies.
He was so fixated on his new game that he missed the perplexed look the Devil shot him.
Harry had never played a video game before (the Dursleys would’ve rather died), but he didn’t find it very difficult. Together with the demon controlled by the Devil, he started killing every familiar face he came across.
Creativity was worth extra points.
They had been happily killing wizards and witches left and right for quite some time, when a hesitant knock on the door caught their attention. Harry groaned but kept his eyes on the screen.
“Enter!” the Devil next to him called out, almost crushing his game pad as they chased a cursing Alastor Moody through Diagon Alley.
“My Lord…” a reaper said fearfully. “An angel has arrived to take the sacrifice to heaven.”
“My name is Harry.” Harry grumbled. “And can we have like ten more minutes? This is real time, you can’t pause this.”
Tom nodded distractedly, and behind them, the reaper stammered out a respectful “Ah… yes, of course. My Lord, … Harry.”
Ten minutes later, the reaper knocked again.
Harry cursed, but put his hands in his lap anyway. “You think they have this upstairs too?”
“The game?” Tom asked slowly. “Probably not, no. They are very pacifistic up there. All about the peace of the soul and … being at peace and… clouds, I guess.”
“Sounds boring.” Harry frowned.
“Yeah, well, why do you think I left?” Tom rolled his eyes.
Harry let his game pad fall onto the ground and looked around the room. “So…”
The Devil looked at him expectantly.
The reaper shifted nervously.
Harry rolled his eyes. “Can I stay, or what?” he snapped.
Tom stared at him. “You want to… stay. Here?”
Harry shrugged. “Why not? This room is nicer than any place I’ve ever lived in, I get to kick Dumbledore’s ass, and you’re nice.”
“I’m… nice.” Tom repeated slowly, both of them ignoring the reaper chocking in surprise at the door. “Harry, I am the Devil. I torture people.”
“Yeah, but only the bad guys, right?” Harry argued. “So technically, you’re one of the good guys.”
“I’m really, really not.”
“Look.” Harry crossed his arms, glaring at the Devil. “How about you just let me stay here as long as I want to? Your deal with heaven doesn’t specify when exactly the sacrifices need to walk up the stairway to heaven, does it?”
“It’s more like a lift, really.” the Devil said distractedly. He looked kind of lost, sitting there on the floor with the game pad lying in his lap. “And I guess it’s not specified, but… no one ever…”
Well, that just wouldn’t do. The Devil looked upset, and Harry had decided that he would be awarded the position as Harry’s new (and kind of only) friend, therefore being unhappy was a big no-go.
“There you have it!” he said happily. “I’m staying, and the angel can fuck off back to heaven.”
“I… guess.” Tom agreed slowly, a small smile on his lips.
“Ehm… my Lord?” the reaper said hesitantly. “The… the angel said that you are still required to take care of the souls of the mortals who performed the ritual, no matter where the sacrifice decides to spend his afterlife.”
Tom smirked widely at Harry, who responded in kind. “Oh, no worries. I’m sure we’ll find a way to entertain them.”
Harry giggled as his demon (who he had named Jonathan and who had apparently gotten bored just standing around) killed yet another of Dumbledore’s followers on the screen, knowing that he’d get to meet them all again when their souls arrived in his new home.
He grinned as he saw the Devil pick up the game pad once more.
Funny, he didn’t think this was his worst weekend ever, after all.
“Oh, by the way, can you get me some new clothes? I’d wear literally anything else.”
“Why, Harry, I think you look quite fetching in that dress.”
“It’s a ritual robe, you asshole.”
“Sure, whatever you say, darling.”