It wasn't the burning sun, the toxic air, or even the eerie deadness of the earth that got to Harry.
No, it was the acidic rain.
He watched the aid slowly wear down the glass above him, sitting curled up in the broken seat of a car that had rusted and fallen mostly apart over time. Rain used to be so cool and sweet on his skin, when the sky was still clear and blue, when there were animals that lived peacefully in their habitats. He'd loved to stand in the rain, sometimes dancing with Luna when it was a slow day.
"Thinking about the rain?"
The soft voice was familiar and he smiled over at Luna's spirit softly. "Yeah. I just miss it, y'know?"
There was a scoff from behind him slightly, Tom's spirit moving to lean against the back of the seat Luna was in as if he was real. "Sap."
His glare was halfhearted, as was the boy's insult.
The rain seemed to slow, the pitter-patter sound growing softer. Sticking his arm out and barely flinching at the few drops of stinging rain he smiled. "Come on, it's time to hunt."
Hands stained with the blood of the man he'd been hunting down for the last few days, he leaned back aginst the cooling body and sighed. "Death?"
A mass of inky shadows congealed into a figure draped in black cloth that seemed to suck in the light around it. “Master… Have you finally decided to move on?”
"Is it true? This was the last of them?"
The being dipped it's 'head'. "You are the last living thing on the face of this barren wasteland except for only a few species of rodent and insect."
He let out a long breath at the confirmation, before tilting his head and looking at the entity. “So... where do we go from here? ” Harry’s voice was soft, sad even, for the first time in centuries. “Can I go see my family?”
There was a smile in the shadow entity’s voice as it spoke. “You can have whatever you want Master, whenever you want. As long as you still want to be my Master then there is nothing to hold you back, no rules to play by, no limit to your abilities other than the ones you place on yourself.”
The young looking man with wild green eyes grinned slowly. “In that case, I would like to go back to when it all started. To just before I got that accursed Hogwarts letter.”
“Then let me mend you first, heal your split mind before I take you back. You will be of no use to anyone without the cunningly brilliant mind you had so carefully developed.” Cold bone like hands reached out and found his forehead and he found himself screaming as his mind was fused back together, organized itself back to the way it had been before he’d broken so spectacularly.
Panting, Harry collapsed as Death let go of him, and when he looked up there was still just a tiny glint of madness in those green eyes (but then again he had seen the world die). “I also want Tom fixed. Put back together, with a little bit of pain to remind him how shitty an idea it was to rip himself up in the first place, and give him the memories from this Tom. Allow him to see what his insanity and need to win through fear caused the world to turn to.”
The spirit of Tom Riddle seemed to consider this before smirking. “That may actually work. I should know that I learn best through pain.”
Death tilted his head as if the formless entity was some sort of curious animal looking to his Master. “And your sister?”
Harry looked to Luna, picking himself up of the ground with a toothy smile. “Yes. If you have her remember, I will find her and make sure she is safe by my side, as we have discussed.”
The pulsing entity of darkness looked from the ghosts to his Master once more. “All will be done as you wish, Master.”
And with the clicking snap of bony fingers that seemed to ring out across the barren dessert, making reality shiver as it was pulled apart and put back together, it was done.
Three souls flared brilliantly in the unsuspecting night some 250 years from the fated end of the world (for now).
A set of brilliant green eyes flew open in the middle of the night in his dusty cupboard, a low chuckle escaping cracked lips as The-Boy-Who-Lived smiled contently up at the spiderwebs of his cupboard and turned over to get a good night's sleep, ready for the excitement the next day would bring.
A horrible creature, a product of misused dark magic suddenly found itself screeching out in pain in a dark forest as it was painfully reconstructed, and a small boy opened his eyes in surprise when the light faded, looking down at his small pale hands with a sigh. “Damn it Death… you had to make me a kid again, didn't you…”
A little girl woke crying, wide blue eyes searching her room for her brother, only to curl up tightly around her blanket when she realized he wasn't at her side. But he’d come for her soon and that knowledge alone let her drift into a semi restless slumber.