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Birthday

By spinefloret

Horror / Fantasy

Birthday

Quite honestly, I don't see how you can pretend that all of these things never existed. Why pretend that they're not your problem, not your fault? You created it. It was from your flesh and blood, laced with poison. It was doomed from the minute your lungs trembled to take their first breath of air. You were born to create this creature, there was never another choice. What, will you reject your own destiny?


She was born silent and still, eyes closed and at first the nurse thought that she was as dead as the mother that gave birth to her. She was born dead.

She was born cursed.

Somehow, she was alive by the time that her father came to see his dead wife, the nurse rocking her, eyes wide, and he stared at the child. His eyes hardened, his face reddened, but he took her from the nurse anyway and led his son back to the house. It was this night, under paper ceilings and screaming faces that she was soothed to sleep by the singing voice of her dead mother.


Merope Gaunt should have died next to her mother that day.

She was four years old, dark eyes set far apart under a mop of unkempt hair, purples and greens peeking out from under her ratty dress. She was an unattractive child, dirty and bruised. She didn't leave the house, she didn't protest when her father screamed at her, striking her in a rage, hissing and spitting in a language dead to all but them.

It was this dead language that ate away at you, a dark undercurrent of magic that curled into you and twisted its roots, dislodging you, ripping you out and throwing you down raw. It burned every time it touched her, and she could feel heavy chains linking themselves around her center, locking something away. It's okay, you were born for this.


Merope Gaunt dreamed not of the future, but the past.

You should have never existed, was whispered night by night like a lullaby, she saw her mother in her sleep. You weren't supposed to live, she told her, taking her by the hands, and you are doomed to die the same way I did: creating a monster...

She was eight years old, pale skin freckled with scars, scrubbing tiles in the house until her hands bled and her bruises were aching, and then her father would come home and let's see you fix this, you disgusting little-

I'm sorry, her mother would say, brushing her hair behind her ears, revealing more discolored skin, I brought you into this... and her mother would lean down to whisper in her ear, but it's still your fault, your destiny...


Merope Gaunt was falling apart.

Eyelashes flutter against tear-stained skin and she's awake again. Thirteen years old and she's not going to magic school, and she has a particularly lovely scar from her eleventh birthday when she didn't get an acceptance letter. She's short and thin, all sharp angles and protruding bones. She looks sickly and unsightly, her hands constantly trembling, barely able to keep their hold on her mother's old wand. Dark, deep circles hung like half-moons under her eyes. Squib, that's what her father called her, a squib, and as she tried desperately to use her wand to do anything, she realized that she was burnt out.

Dead end- she was going nowhere. Suffocated by the gift that she was too cursed to even use, she tried to defy destiny. Death, but she just couldn't die- not again, not yet. Darling, her mother spoke softly, bandaging her up, no one can escape.


Merope Gaunt was haunted.

Her mother still visited her, night by night, whispering poison into her ears and down into her very blood. Her mother and this stranger from the village had the very same eyes, the ones that she could never escape from, the ones that flitted across her sight, even when her eyes were closed.

The stranger from the village was a Riddle, Tom Riddle, and she was obsessed with him (with finding her destiny). Completely fascinated, busying herself in front of the house while he came down the road, offering him a cool drink on a hot day. He is yours, her mother said, always yours. Eighteen, and she slipped him a love potion. Her father and brother attacked her, cursed him, but he loved her too much to ever leave her. As they were hauled off to Azkaban, Merope eloped with her new husband, because after all, she was so close to her destiny that she could taste it.


Merope Riddle was pregnant.

She caressed her stomach, scarred, pale, and just showing the slightest hints of a bump. She had run out of a way to acquire a love potion, and he didn't stay for the child- the demon you are carrying, her mother murmured. She was living on the streets, only nineteen, and as she stumbled her way through frozen nights and dirty alleys, she pleaded to survive just long enough to birth her child. After all, her mother mentioned, he is the reason you survived. This child is your destiny. So close.

She begged her way through London, collapsing on an orphanage's steps on New Year's Eve, 1926.


Merope Riddle was dying.

She cradled the child in her arms, shrieking, crying baby boy that she had birthed. Tom Marvolo Riddle. Her lungs were quaking, her blood was stinging, and she was shaking. So close, oh, so close to actually escaping, and please, she begged, please, I've done what I must, I've fulfilled my purpose here, let me go. Someone took her son from her arms, and covered her with a thicker blanket. Her mother was there, stroking her hair. She blinked, and her mother was gone, just leaving her, shivering under a stranger's blanket, dying under a stranger's roof. As her heart stuttered to a stop, one thing became perfectly clear.

Merope was born to die.

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