Part of a Master of Death series on my Profile called Master of Nothing, description on there
Life 58: Strange Tidings
Most of my lives, I'm born and raised.
I'm taught and educated in the rules of the world that is now mine.
Normally I get a few years before I'm thrown into Hell.
This life, I'm in the middle of a fucking tornado, and I haven't been in this life more than ten minutes.
"Fuck my lives."
Behind me stood a forest, of which I somehow knew I had walked from, as I approached the seaside cliff, walking even closer to the doomsday storm.
Why I was, seemed to be beyond the hill, shining down on me with a protective gaze, or perhaps malice.
I was confused as hell, and I was intimidated by a lighthouse… Though, that damn tornado still managed to beat it in waves.
Said lighthouse stood wearily, lighting up the darkness as a disastrous tornado, the likes of which only Lovecraft could have imagined, raged closer and closer to me, and the mainland.
I had a bad feeling about this… But I also had some bad questions about this all…
Rain pelted down like glass from the sky, the weight of it pulling me down towards the Earth, as I tried to move farther from what seemed to be certain death.
I knew Death though, and I knew they wouldn't throw me into this life only to die immediately.
They already said that it took way too much work to put me here, so they wouldn't waste my time or theirs.
"Where am I? What's even happening?" I thought to myself, as I trudged farther through the storm, my hands covering my face as the rain fell like bullets.
Unfortunately, before I could reach shelter, the tornado overtook the land, the eye opening to surround me fully.
Out of nowhere, a fishing boat flew through the air with a rage, only to crash into my body.
It almost felt like Uncle Vernon had come for revenge, as I swear that looked like his old fishing tug, the one he'd bought one summer to teach Dudley to fish, and then abandoned on the water.
Despite all I had done in my lives, a damn boat took me out, while I stood still cursing my long dead uncle.
I hate boats.
"Max? Ms. Caulfield, are you okay?" A calming voice called out, awakening me from my sleep.
I was familiar with this sensation however, as my first rest after a new life often left me drained.
I had only learned after meeting Death, that my lives were a product of both them and I fusing briefly to resurrect me.
Unfortunately, I had no choice in this.
Death said I needed to be everyone that they made me, that I was needed in every life I lived… I didn't believe Ariana Dumbledore had needed me…
"Wait… Miss?" I thought to myself, as I pushed myself up from my rest. I was splayed out on a wooden desk, a prestigious classroom greeting my sight, as I saw a class full of snobbish looking teenagers looking at me expectantly.
"Um… I'm good, I guess…" I muttered out, as I placed a hand to my forehead for support. Sadly, this only enforced what he had feared.
"Welp, I'm female again… Of course this had to be #58… I went from a Spanish Adventurer to a teenage girl… What a step up…"
"Don't lie to me Maxine, I see something's bothering you. Maybe Nurse Tella could help you?" The teacher, a tanned young man suggested from the other side of the room, a concerned look on his face.
Despite his expression, I had a feeling something was up with him.
Also, I've been named Henrietta and Owen before… Both terrible names in their own, but somehow, Maxine is even worse…
"I think Max is just a bit nervous Mr. Jefferson, perhaps she shouldn't be a part of the contest?" A haughty blonde girl suggested to the teacher, the gleam in her eyes and grin made it obvious she didn't like whatever girl I had become.
"Great, first day in this life, and I already have enemies."
"I'm sure Max is fine, aren't you Max?" Jefferson asked me, a small smile on his face as he stepped closer to me. Something didn't seem right with him, but I nodded as I gathered my stuff into what seemed to be my messenger bag.
"I- I think I'm going to get some water Mr. Jefferson." I said as calmly as I could, as I started running a list in my mind of everything I had to do.
Thankfully, I could feel the magic running through my veins, confirming I was a witch. Strangely, the magic felt a bit different, but fortunately not as wicked as my magic was when I was Jon.
The rituals had been hellish…
Jefferson nodded with a smile as he gestured to the door, and I took full advantage of his courtesy.
I felt eyes on me before I left, and saw a depressed looking girl watch me leave with a look that spoke of lonely abandonment.
A voice within me told me her name was Kate, and that she roomed near me, and that I was supposed to be her friend.
Apparently this was a boarding school.
"Good to know." I thought as I walked out of the class, leaving behind the snobs and that weird ass teacher.
First thing's first, I needed to see myself, and get my fucking head on straight.
"Priorities, you know?"
"I'm a goddamn Hipster…" I growled out as I looked at the nerdy girl in the mirror.
Seems I'm kind of an antisocial bitch as well, considering the absence of pictures of my friends in the bag I carried. If I even had friends that is...
I wasn't too upset with the photography thing, as I've been a painter and scribe in Rome, so many lives ago.
I had grown an appreciation for the Arts, but not for isolation.
"Need to fix that first." I thought as I tried to access Max's memories, which wasn't too much of a challenge.
Surprisingly, the memories came easier than they did in most lives, as Parker's memories had been extremely hard to get.
"Okay… I have friends, that's good I guess." I thought, as I remembered the boy Warren, who apparently had a crush on me. (At least Max had a suspicion.)
Unfortunately for the kid, I wasn't into crossing sabers, even if I didn't have one in this world.
That girl though, Kate something or other, she had potential, and she was nice, but sad from what Max remembered.
There was another girl in Max's mind, but apparently they hadn't spoken in years.
Chloe Price was her name.
I should probably track her down, but I had a feeling I'd see her before I could even try.
Welp, I was right.
While I was resting in the corner of the bathroom, trying to get a full grasp on Max's memories and the odd magic that filled my new, unfortunately young body, the bathroom door banged open with a loud crash.
Hiding in the corner of the room, and channeling energy into my pupils, I saw a blond guy in a letterman's jacket stomp into the bathroom in a daze. I knew enough about drugs to know he was on something, and I swear something was wrong with him.
I couldn't tell properly without a wand, but I knew trauma when I saw it.
The oh so many wars had taught me enough.
He leaned against one of the sinks, very similar to how I been earlier, starting to talk to himself.
"It's cool Nathan… Don't stress. You're okay bro, just count to three… " He muttered to himself with heavy breaths, as I saw the stress eating at him. Something was bugging this kid a lot.
If I didn't have memories telling me that he hated me, I would have tried comforting him.
He reminded me of Draco slightly, and I had come to regret not saving the kid from his father's influence.
From what I knew of Nathan Prescott, he seemed way too similar.
Before I could intervene though, a punkish girl charged into the bathroom, her eyes narrowing at the sight of him.
Apparently she didn't like him.
Max didn't like him either, at least from what I had gathered from her mind.
I was in charge now though, and I say the guy deserved a chance. When he stopped being a dick, that is.
Nathan looked at the girl then, the anger burning in his eyes suddenly, as I saw him tense up, a hand drifting to his waist in a way too familiar fashion..
"So, what do you want?" He growled out, as he seemed to rest his hand on something out of sight.
That stance reminded me way too much of when I knew Jacob.
Nathan Prescott had a gun.
"I may have to intervene anyway…"
The two began talking then, as the girl began insulting him and trying to rile him up, as she apparently was trying to buy drugs from him.
She seemed to not know that you don't threaten your dealer though…
Their exchange kept going with me watching carefully, until Nathan seemed to have enough, pulling his gun on her, backing her into the wall.
"You don't know who the fuck I am, or who you're messing around with!" He screamed out, as he tightened his grip on the pistol, pointing it at her stomach.
From analyzing the trajectory of the possible shot, I knew that a bullet from that angle would kill the girl.
The girl panicked then, as he grew more and more out of control, his hair standing on end.
"Where'd you get that? What are you doing? Come on, put that thing down!" She demanded of him, though it seemed to be more begging than she would have liked.
Something triggered within me then, as a voice that I was beginning to classify as Max's voice screamed inside my mind.
Apparently this girl was Chloe Price, Max's childhood friend. The one she had seemingly abandoned, yet she still didn't want dead.
Though what remained of Max was extremely afraid, I wasn't.
I had handled much more intimidating foes, and ones a lot more skilled with firearms than this kid.
Hell, I had fought and killed literal monsters before.
A kid with Daddy Issues was going to be easy.
Deciding that I had, had enough of this, I stepped from cover and aimed a hand at the idiot.
Intending on casting a wandless stunner at the boy, even I was surprised, as instead of the familiar red light, I saw the air start to distort around my hand.
My vision began to darken then, as everything around me began to fade into a dark blue.
"Hell?" I found myself asking aloud, shooting up to my feet, as a piercing headache consumed me.
My vision was shifting and dark, before focusing in an instant, seeing what was before me.
This was… impossible?
"While I would normally condemn you for your language, are you okay Max? You don't look so good." The teacher from before, Jefferson, asked of me with confused eyes.
Apparently Max didn't usually act like me.
Also, she didn't usually time travel.
I thought I was just a witch… but what a surprise.
I'm a Temporal Anomaly as well.
"Well, this'll be fun…"
Just as before, I had gotten Jefferson to excuse me, and headed back to the girl's bathroom.
Normally I would have stopped to think, maybe try and assimilate Maxine Caulfield into myself sooner, but she seemed to have a much stronger will than I expected for an awkward teenage girl.
She demanded we save Chloe, I didn't really disagree.
So, we went to the bathroom, twenty minutes before we had the last time.
After a bit of work, I had managed to achieve at least a bit of my natural magic, and managed a Muggle Notice-Me-Not.
Now, I waited in the first stall of the bathroom, already knowing that both Nathan and Chloe would check said stalls.
I didn't care, I just had to get my hands on Nathan, and ensure that Chloe didn't run into him.
Thankfully, I remembered how to apparate.
Sadly, I couldn't do it without making noise.
A wand did make a big difference.
I didn't mind the wait, finding enough stimulation in categorizing Max's memories and experiences, and growing to hate selfies.
"Max Caulfield, better get ready, we're switching to painting."
Before I could fight with the mental remnants of the girl, the boy that seemed even more troubled the second time around, charged into the bathroom.
Still unnoticed by anyone possible, I crept from the stall, not wanting him to work himself into even more of a rage, and grabbed the boy around the shoulders.
With a grunt of effort, I apparated the two of us from the bathroom.
Sadly, I didn't have a clue where to.
"Welp, this might be difficult."
"W-where, what am I?!" The boy screamed out, as the two of us found ourselves on a beach, conveniently on the same beach I had, had a vision of.
Thankfully, there wasn't a tornado this time, just an angry spoiled bastard.
"On a beach, near some woods. I don't really know to be honest." I said casually, as I tried to mimic my own speaking voice by instinct. The voice that I had often used to take charge, my action hero voice.
It sounded odd coming from 18-year old Max Caulfield, who I swear had not even gone through puberty yet, despite the impossibility of it.
Then again, I just time traveled without a Conduit.
This was a day of impossibilities, and it didn't seem to be ending.
Mr. Prescott didn't look too happy to see me, as he pulled his gun on me immediately.
I scoffed under my breath. Can't have that after all.
"You bitch! What did you do to me?!" He screamed, his eyes both angry and fearful, though he obviously tried to hide the latter. He failed at that.
"I teleported us. You were about to kill someone. I saved you from what would likely be life in prison, and a very painful one at that." I bluffed to him expertly, as even though I was in Max's body, I thankfully had all of my skills, especially my social skills.
My once father Ned had drilled diplomacy and politics into me, which came in handy way too often. Especially when I kidnapped people.
Nathan just looked in shock at me, as his grip on the gun loosened enough for me to pull it to me.
Using my prior knowledge, I began to disassemble the gun as soon as it reached my hands, letting the metal parts of it fall to the sand below.
Within a minute, Nathan had nothing to hurt anyone, besides his mediocre strength.
"How did you… You crazy bitch!" He screamed out, as he charged at me.
Not wanting to bother, I pressed my palm to his forehead as soon as he got close enough, instantly knocking him out.
While I felt sympathy for the kid, I wasn't going to let him hurt me.
While he normally wouldn't be able to, I had just gotten this body. This new... weak... body.
I still had work to do to ensure my survival, which included exercise.
But first, I had to find a safe and isolated place to drop the guy off, and a temperamental girl to re-introduce myself to… well, the new Max to.
Before that though, I'm changing my fucking clothes.
This cutesy crap wasn't me, and it wouldn't be Max.
If anyone asked about it, I'd just blame the girl.
I mean, Chloe seems like a bad influence after all.
"Who am I to blame, if she 'corrupts' me?"
Sadly, I didn't really know where Chloe lived.
Max knew where she used to live, but with her having moved, and them not being in contact in years, it became difficult to find her.
Really, I didn't see her as a priority so much as a distraction.
Putting that aside for later, I decided to head to the dormitory, as that would probably tell me at least a bit of what I should be doing, or at least, should know.
"What classes do I even take?" I asked myself (Or what remained of Max, who now had become a quiet whisper in the back of my mind), as I flipped through the journal I'd found in her bag.
"This is the angstiest crap I've ever read, and I thought Felice's poetry was bad…" I muttered to myself judgmentally, as I flipped through the diary pages, skipping over pages where she'd just drawn or posted pictures she'd taken with her old camera.
"Jefferson is supercool and superchill." I read as annoyingly as possible, imagining the stars in her eyes Max must have had when writing this crap.
I swear I could vomit from the memories I had gotten. I remembered her writing this garbage.
"I need some air…" I breathed out in a huff, as I got out of her room as quickly as possible. The wall of pictures, the Ikea furniture, the freaking plant… "Yeah, I need to throw out a lot of stuff…"
Unfortunately, the blonde bitch from the classroom, Vicky or something, and her friends were sitting by the doors of the dorm, preventing me from leaving.
"Oh, this is going to go well." I thought to myself, as I saw the blonde lift her head, and look smugly at me with spite in her beady eyes. In another life, I would have found her attractive, in this one, she was just another distraction.
"Oh, look, it's Max Caulfield, the selfie ho of Blackwell. What a lame-" She began to say to me, but I just tuned her out. All I really caught was that she wasn't moving, and I really didn't want to get in a cat-fight on my first day of this life.
Any other day, I would, but not my first day. I still needed to regain my strength after all, and that would take time.
Which, I seemed to have…
"Whatever bitch…" I scoffed as I walked back to my dorm, leaving the stunned blonde and her pals behind.
I'd just apparate out, as I didn't feel up to throwing around any more stunners, my magic not even responding to my call, almost as if it had fallen asleep. Fortunately, I had learned to apparate without tapping into my magic.
Maybe it was a gift from Death, considering that I didn't even get to keep the Hallows, but maybe my soul had mutated or some weird crap.
I didn't think I would be figuring it out anytime soon, but I knew I couldn't afford to fight anyone right now.
Oddly enough though, those time powers of Max's were flying to my fingers whenever I reached for them… Almost eager to help…
There had to be a price to this… The Symbiote had taught me that great power came with a cost, and the seemingly limitless ability to rewind time, with seemingly no consequences, and no paradoxes to boot?
"Yeah, totally not going to bite me in the ass..." I muttered cynically, as I snapped my fingers, disappearing from the dorm and the school grounds all together.
"Whole new town, hell, whole new world… This, I've got to see..."