Jasmine's wand was at the ready as she sized up Tom, completely ignoring Albus. The headmaster might be a pain in arse, but he wasn't her enemy at the moment. Her palms were sticky with sweat, blood and grime as she walked in front of Dumbledore.
She was going to the center of Tom's attention for the time being. Albus wasn't a spring chicken anymore and from what Jasmine understood he had been dueling for a while.
Death's magic was still available if she needed to use it, but she hoped that she wouldn't, since using it would cause her to collapse. Mortal bodies weren't meant to use primordial magic for prolonged periods of time, even one chose by Lady Magic herself.
Though, Jasmine supposed she would have a bit of an advantage. Death was harvesting the souls in the room around her and hovering over those that were on the brink and just waiting till they drew their final breaths. Jasmine could feel Death's presence everywhere.
Not to mention that Death was giddy being so close to ripping the remaining shred of soul out of Tom's still beating chest. The Deity had been waiting for this moment for so long and Jasmine was finally going to deliver it.
The current Dark Lord strode towards her. He was in high quality dragon hide dueling robes. Jasmine wasn't sure of the breed, but it had to be high quality. His outer robe was a bit singed from his scuffle with Albus, but otherwise he was unharmed. He didn't seem to be suffering from any curses, though from the light show they were putting on it might have been mostly transfiguration and charm work.
It was such a waste of magic, but then again, it was Albus' specialty to use transfiguration and the best way to combat that was through charm work. Dumbledore was okay with defense against the dark arts, but it wasn't his go to magic. But, then again, okay magic for Albus Dumbledore was fantastic for an average wizard.
Tom, on the other hand, had always been adaptable, but Albus was still the better duelist. Decades more experience would do that. At least, Jasmine had nine other lives to fall back for some kind of experience. It wasn't nearly as extensive as the two men before her, but it was probably the most varied. Jasmine herself was an unconventional duelist and that would prove useful here.
"It's been a while since I've dueled you magically, Tom. It's been nearly four and a half years," she commented as she kept her wand and knife at the ready. The golems behind them were shaking the very foundation they were standing on as they brought some of the giants to their knees.
Tom side eyed his falling comrades, but made no move to help them. "You just can't find competent help, though you have made collecting the people I need very difficult. I would almost say you had an uncanny ability to figure out key players that would help me take over the wizarding world."
"If I was that omnipotent you would have been stopped years ago," Jasmine scoffed, but made sure she kept her mind shielded, just in case Tom tried to possess her again. She didn't need that kind of headache a second time.
While Jasmine was holding Tom's interest, she could see Sirius was making his way over the Headmaster to check on him for injuries with her rune vision. It might take all three of them to subdue Tom. She needed them all in fighting shape.
"Still, it has been rather impressive to see you attempt to thwart my plans, but alas, you have fallen into my trap. This will be your grave, Jasmine Peverell, you and the majority of the Wizengamot are present here today. And, when you all die, there will be no one to rule Britain, save for me and a handful of my most loyal subjects. We will rebuild this world from its ashes and create a magical utopia for purebloods."
And there was the madness behind the method. His obsession with blood purity was always his most hypocritical aspect.
Jasmine let out a snort. "That's rich considering you're a halfblood. Why scream blood purity when your father didn't have an ounce of magic in him?"
Tom snarled, but didn't attack, giving Sirius more time to help Albus get into a better position. "Do not mention my father. You're a child. Do you really think you can defeat me? I am Lord Voldemort!"
Another giant crashed to the ground as cheers erupted from behind them. The Death Eaters were losing ground, but Tom didn't seem deterred in the slightest. He must still have another trick up his sleeve.
The Dark Lord grinned as his final giant collapsed and snapped his fingers. Jasmine saw runes activate around his feet, they were ancient summoning and transmutation circles, Greek in origin. They were siphoning the blood from the giants. At a brief glance she could tell that these would bring forth creatures of darkness.
Sirius was by her side in an instant, his wand trained on Tom.
It was moments later that the temperature began to drop rapidly. "Dementors!" Sirius hissed as the hooded creatures began to appear in a large hoard above them. The monsters were within the summoning circle. They weren't passing the threshold of the summoning circle, not yet. Jasmine assumed when enough of them entered the atrium the circle would shatter and unleash them. Then again, there were plenty of people within the circle that could have their souls sucked from their unconscious bodies.
Those damn traitors. She had warned them not to betray her and Death, but it didn't seem like they listened.
Their mistake. Jasmine wasn't a child anymore.
Their misery inducing powers were brushing against Jasmine's mind, but they bounced off harmlessly. Now that she was the Master of Death, they didn't affect her anymore.
"So, this is your trump card? Dementors?" Jasmine asked incredulously with a raised eyebrow as Dumbledore moved to stand beside her for what had to be the first time in this life. She supposed that Dementors were an evil that everyone was willing to fight off.
The Headmaster shivered slightly as the creatures circled a bit lower, but stood proud against the writhing mass of darkness above them. Sirius' arm was trembling slightly. He was still terrified of dementors, he could barely stand to hear them mentioned. She hoped that he would keep his nerve, the dementors could sense fear.
They fed on the stuff.
And, she could feel their hunger. These were the only creatures Death ever created before Lady Magic banned the Deity from ever doing it again.
There were so many souls to feast on down here. For a moment Jasmine felt Death brush up against her and she knew she had the Deity's blessing to banish these beasts.
"Oh, no, it is much worse than that. These creatures will harvest all of your souls and leave behind husks, which I can manipulate to do my bidding. Why do you think I've had you all dueling for so long? A patronus takes power, you don't have a lot of that left. The Wizengamot will be so much simpler to control with literal puppets filling the seats. Not to mention marriages between the houses will be so much easier without free will. These creatures are perfect."
He snapped his finger once more, raised his wand and allowed the dementors to descend in a mass of tattered robes and rotting flesh. Jasmine ducked as two reached for her and she quickly rolled to the side as Tom shot off a stunning spell that missed her by millimeters.
Tom laughed maniacally as desperate shouts of "Expecto Patronum!" echoed around the room.
"Sirius! Albus! Distract the Dark Lord. I can handle the dementors!" She shouted as the screams of the remaining fighters could be heard. The dementors were breaking through weak Patroni from tired order members. The Death Eaters weren't fairing any better. Some were already beginning to collapse. Most of them didn't even know how to summon a patronus. The cleanup for this was going to be a nightmare. There were going to be a lot of soulless to deal with when this was finished.
Blaise's golems were swinging at the hooded creatures left and right, but even if they smashed them to bits, the nasty creatures would just heal off the death and misery in the room.
Jasmine quickly side stepped under one of Tom's curses before Sirius and Albus took over distracting him. Her husband gave her hand a quick squeeze as he passed, he was a bit green around the mouth as the air chilled further. Albus summoned some kind of fire dragon and Sirius was blasting the floor around Tom.
That should hopefully keep him busy for a few minutes.
Dumbledore and Sirius were trading blows with Tom across the way, neither of them were giving him a chance to move towards her, which she was thankful for. A bright purple spell whizzed by Tom as Cassiopeia made her way over to the fight. It seemed that the Carrow twins were either very unconscious or very dead. Jasmine wasn't sure which option she preferred more.
For, what may have been the first time since Grindelwald, Albus and Cassiopeia were fighting on the same side against a common threat in battle.
The enemy of my enemy and all that rot, Jasmine supposed.
The temperature was continuing to drop as the dementors gained traction, but Jasmine wasn't going to let them win. The little bastards needed to learn a very valuable lesson. Death didn't allow traitors of their cause to exist in this world. Jasmine closed her eyes and accessed the well of power that Death had granted her. The Deity was grinning in her mind's eye, holding out the scythe they pretend they don't have.
She matched Death's grin as she gripped the scythe and opened her eyes, which were both shining a bright grey in color. The power of Death was coursing through her. She hadn't had a power rush like this in nearly four lifetimes.
For a moment all the dementors stopped, the witches and wizards fighting them stopped screaming as the temperature plunged again as they all turned towards Jasmine. She could feel the ethereal scythe in her hands. It was a pure grey in color. Then, as a single unit, the dementors swarmed her.
In that moment, she was imbued with enough Death magic that any dementor within a five-hundred-kilometer radius would be called to her.
And come they did.
They flew to her like moths to a flame.
Their rotting bodies circled her, their moans and screams were echoing in a war cry against her and the power she wielded.
Jasmine had nine lifetimes that were filled with misery and death. It was enough to make any dementor swoon at the meal before them, but she wasn't about to let them touch her soul.
She raised her hand to the air as they attempted to feast.
To her right Sirius and Dumbledore were dispelling some kind of explosive canaries and a quicksand curse. Cassiopeia was manically laughing as she caused the floor below Tom to disintegrate in a pool of acid. While she wasn't the most power witch in the world, Cassiopeia was surely one of the most feared and dangerous.
The dementors began their attack, launching themselves at Jasmine and attempting to grab and hold her down. A few were trying to breach her mind. They wanted her to faulter, Tom wanted this to break her.
"To the depths with all of you!" She shouted as a ball of light formed in her open palm. The creatures shrieked and writhed as the light began to encompass and burn them from the inside out. This was the beauty of Death, the one Deity that walked with humans their entire lives from beginning to end. Death came for all, that included the damned.
These creatures stood no chance against it as they were slowly obliterated.
Jasmine was covered in the ash and tattered remains from the fallen dementors. She tried to stagger as Death's magic started to ebb away.
The ground shook beneath her feet, nearly sending her face firs to the ground. A shout of pain could be heard from the battle behind her.
Death's magic still hummed beneath her skin. She wasn't finished yet, but the power would begin to fade within the next few minutes and then they would all be in trouble. She didn't have time to faint, not in the middle of battle like this.
Jasmine turned towards the shout and saw Dumbledore gripping a heavily bleeding arm. She could see muscle and bone sticking out from between his robes. Sirius was covering for him, but Tom was older and more experience with these kinds of duels and started to gain ground. Cassiopeia was guarding both of them, her breathing was labored. She was far too old to be dueling like this.
Tom grinned as he started to advance on the group of three.
Jasmine's eyes narrowed. That wasn't going to happen, at least not while she was still breathing.
She dashed towards the fight ducking around hazardous curses and partly transfigured debris. She was nearly silent as she sent up a shield charm just in time to stop a severing hex from hitting Sirius.
"Keep your filthy curses away from my husband, Riddle."
Cassie smirked moved to stand in front of Albus and give Sirius a moment to ready himself. Though, he hissed when he raised his wrist. It was swelling and a bit discolored. He didn't trop his wand, but he might have a broken wrist.
Tom's eyes narrowed as his steps slowed. "So, you two did marry in secret after all. There had been rumors that neither of you were available for courtship. But, that doesn't matter to me. Black will be dead by the end of the day and you, dear, will be a puppet bending to my will."
Jasmine lifted her wand up and blacked Tom's view of both Albus and Sirius. "Your horcrux said something very similar," she replied, her tone airy as his eyes narrowed and his hand clenched around his wand.
If she didn't have his full attention she certainly did now. "What do you know of horcruxes, Peverell?"
She smirked as she pulled out her dagger, "Well, I know that shredding your soul is an affront to Lady Magic as well as Death. You have quite a few Deities call for your head."
Tom scoffed his wand was aimed directly at her, "The great magical deities don't exist. They are just an archaic belief that less men hold onto."
Oh, how wrong he was. For someone that claimed to be a pureblood activist, he didn't know as much about the responsibilities that purebloods had to magic. She wasn't sure who had failed him there, it could have been his own hubris, which was completely possible.
"What I do know is that I found a diadem, a ring, a cup, a diary and a locket with part of your soul tied to it. I destroyed them all. The locket managed to get pretty far on its own, but it wasn't a match for me."
As she listed off the horcruxes Tom became paler and paler. Jasmine doubted that Albus even knew about them yet. They had to have been Tom's most treasured secret and she had destroyed them all and he hadn't even noticed.
"You did no such thing. I would have noticed!" He hissed his eyes turning from blue to a menacing red.
"You've shredded your soul in half five different times. You're barely holding onto your humanity. There is no way you would have noticed losing something you threw away ages ago," she replied, "did you know that your horcruxes begged for me not to kill them?"
"LIAR!" He snarled before sending off a barrage of curses her way.
Jasmine danced around the spells with ease. Tom was a great traditional duelist and a powerful wizard, but Jasmine was nimble and she was hopefully ready to take him on.
Death was at her side as she rushed towards Tom. Cassiopeia was backing her up with curses and hexes of her own while Sirius got Albus to a safer position. She just needed Tom to monologue for a moment so she could plunge this dagger into his body and end it.
Naturally, the one time she needs him to be a dramatic Dark Lord all he wants to do is duel to the death.
"DIE!" He shouted as he sent a killing curse her way. He stopped for a brief moment, and that was when Jasmine took her opening. She used some of the last of the magic Death had granted her to flash towards him, the spelling completely missing her and crashing into a pillar. She appeared in front of him, her dagger plunged into his abdomen.
Tom's eyes were blown wide as the poison quickly spread through his bloodstream. He collapsed onto the floor. "You can't kill me…I am…Lord…"
But, before he could finish, Death had arrived. The Deity had been waiting for this moment and shoved their hand straight into Tom's still beating chest. Death ripped his soul from his body the tainted wriggling mass was attempting to escape Death's clutches, but to no avail. The Deity had all of the other pieces of the tattered soul and wasn't going release them any time soon.
Death gave Jasmine a smile before disappearing. She collapsed to the floor on her hands and knees, exhausted, but nearly deliriously happy. She could see the Death Eaters falling one by one as their master died. The dark mark would burn and brand them a traitor. It wouldn't kill them, but the world at large would know what they had done.
A few moments later cheering erupted and Sirius engulfed Jasmine in a bone crushing hug. They were both grimy and covered in sweat, but they were still breathing. She could feel Sirius' robes sticking to his back. There was a small cut over his eye that he wiped at as he pulled away. "We did it! Merlin be damned, we did it!"
Sirius gently ran his thumb over her cheek. His finger came back wet. She had to have messy tear tracks running down her face. She hadn't even realized she had been crying. Jasmine let out a wet chuckle as she let her gaze wander back to Tom's dead body. "He's finally dead. We're going to need to-"
Cassiopeia lit the body on fire, beating Jasmine to the punch, as always. The fire combined the with the basilisk venom caused the body to turn to ash. Jasmine banished the ash with a flick of her wrist. There was nothing left of Tom's body, nothing for his followers to use to resurrect him.
Speaking of bodies, she was going to need to figure out what to do with Marlene's. The poor girl was dead. Jasmine wasn't looking forward to that conversation. Lily and Alice were going to be devastated that they hadn't noticed she'd been possessed. Then again, it wasn't something you'd expect to happen to your friend.
Albus cleared his throat. He was favoring his injured arm, but it seemed that he had stopped the bleeding. "Lady Peverell, thank you. I know we have our differences, but thank you for what you did today. As evil as Tom was, I don't know if I could have killed him."
No, he would have just sent "the chosen one" to do it.
Albus offered his hand to her.
Jasmine sighed as she shakily stood up and gripped his weathered hand in hers. "Someone had to take care of Tom Riddle. I'm just glad that our world will finally start to heal."
The headmaster nodded, his blue eyes were twinkling. She hated when they twinkled. "You know, I am planning on stepping down from my role in the Wizengamot. I'm getting far too old…"
She did not have the patience to deal with political nonsense right now. No doubt, there were damage reports coming in and the list of casualties was going to be high.
"No!" A voice shrieked as they moved around a fallen golem. Brightbark? What did he want? "Darkness will not prevail! If Albus won't take care of you, I will!"
Did he have to make it through the final battle? Out of everyone, Jasmine would have taken just about anyone else.
Brightbark was at the foot of the steps his wand raised. Albus rush forward. What did Brightbark think he was doing? Albus was right here! Without any other warning, Brightbark cast a silent curse. Sirius grabbed Jasmine right as Cassiopeia jumped in front of them both.
The world exploded around them and it all faded to black.
And Tom is dead, yet, our heroes are still in danger. You didn't think it was going to be quite that easy? You get to see the consequences of Brightbark's actions in the next chapter. Because, there will be consequences. And you all have to wait another chapter to find out who lived and died during the battle.
I just finished my first submission for grad school. My classes start in three and a half weeks. Which, leaves me just enough time to finish posting this story. Three more chapters left!
Thank you all so much for all the favorites, follows and reviews! You guys are the best.
The next chapter should be posted on June 18, 2021.
See you soon,