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I'm helplessly needless and needless to say I owe you.

Tom’s hands reached forward, slowly and reluctantly. He could not believe that he was so weak...he had promised himself that attachment would only lead to despair because nobody could be trusted. But, he had trusted Harry anyway, and now he was paying the price.

Paying the price every time he walked into the most heavily warded room in Riddle Manor, where the love of his life lay terribly still, frozen in time by a preservation charm.

Sleeping Beauty, Tom thought whimsically, except you are asleep beyond even a place that I can reach. Sleeping your time away far from me and far from everything you knew. And I cannot join you yet; my work is not done.

He had been the one who had convinced Tom that he could be great. He had whispered reassurances late into the night when Tom had brought his doubt out from below his Occlumency shields. He had supported Tom without pause, with each of his smiles.

Tom knew, without a doubt that he would not have gotten this far if not for Harry.

I'm helplessly needless and needless to say I owe you.

Harry was the world, and now the world was lying dead, a secret in the deepest part of Tom’s heart. As Tom sat in his study, planning how he was going to change the world for the better, he would wonder what Harry would say; what Harry would suggest.

His followers probably had no idea that everything was wrong. The world had tilted on its axis, the ground had shifted out from underneath Tom’s feet. The only thing keeping him sane was the memory of Harry and the thought that perhaps, one day, he might see him again.

Well I'd wade ten thousand klicks for a just one more chance.

Tom scavenged the libraries of all of his followers, looking for some hope. Something that would ease the ache in his chest and that would bring back the endless happiness that he never fully appreciated until it was gone.

There were only hints, small hints located in books of the darkest of arts, but that was enough to push Tom to continue searching.

Just one more chance, to see your face again.

One disadvantage of the strong preservation charm that Tom had placed within an instant of Harry’s death, pulling out almost all of his magic at once, was that Harry was hidden from view. His form was visible, yes, but it was hidden behind a veil of silver and gold. Tom wished that he could part that curtain, just to see Harry again, to prove that he wasn’t just a false memory.

Well I'd pull, 10 time the weight of the earth with my teeth.

He would do anything. Tom knew that if he had finally found the solution that he was looking for, he would do it, regardless of the risks; the consequences.

Sometimes, Tom thought that his plans to fix the world simply paled in importance compared to what his followers called, in secret when they believed he could not hear, “the Dark Lord’s side project.”

Fools, the lot of them. As if Harry was something that he could simply push to the side like a common annoyance.

Tom felt himself lose touch with the present, slowly, but one day, his perseverance was rewarded.

The earth with my teeth to touch your face alive.

The book was so old that Tom feared that touching it would cause it to simply fall into dust, indistinguishable from skin and quartz and age. Tom covered it with charms and spells of all kinds before he even dared to touch it.

The books was old and cracked, but it felt like hope under Tom’s cautious fingers.

The ritual was terribly complicated and dangerous. It required so many things that for one moment, Tom faltered. But that moment did not last long; Tom’s resolve came back fast like a waterfall, hitting his head until all he could think of was finding everything he needed to bring Harry back to him.

The ritual simply read, To Bring Together the One who Loved and the One who Was Lost.

You lie helplessly still as your face falls apart.

“I got the basilisk skin that I needed,” Tom said to Harry, wrapped up in his veil of silver and gold. “I got the basilisk eyes too. It’s a pity that Ssaana had to be injured so, but anything for you, my dearest.

You lie helplessly still as your face falls apart.

“It was rather difficult to acquire the phoenix feathers. At first I tried to capture Fawkes. Then, I realized it would be simpler to visit Ollivander’s. Just a little more left,” Tom said. Harry’s frozen form did not reply, but Tom thought that Harry was relieved too.

With wax and wires and hair from the back of your head.

“It’s a little unfortunate that I have to do this,” Tom said, slicing down into Harry’s arm. “But your blood is necessary.”

With wax and wires and hair from the back of your head.

“You know I love you, right?” Tom asked, still speaking to Harry as he stirred the massive cauldron. “I never mentioned this while you were alive, but I thought you knew. I decided to tell you now just in case, though. If this works, I’ll be able to tell you again while you breathe again.”

Well I can make your face brand new.

“We can abandon my plans to fix the world. Who needs the world when we are finally reunited? We’ll be perfect, we’ll become immortal...and then we won’t need the rest of the world again. I can bring you back perfectly, I’m sure, and then everything else will just take care of itself.”

Well I can make your face brand new.

“It’s time,” Tom said as he threw in the final ingredient. It was terribly hard to obtain the Philosopher’s Stone, but nothing was a greater motivator than the thought that Tom wouldn’t be alone anymore. “We’ll see each other again,” Tom promised as he lifted the preservation charm off of Harry and levitated him into the cauldron before climbing in with him.

You are warm.

Tom was hot and he was cold and he felt something sweet run through his veins, something unbearably sweet. It was familiar, though. It was his love for Harry.

The body in the cauldron with him seemed to be getting warmer. Tom wasn’t sure how long there were there, together, in the cauldron, Tom and the dead body of his heart and his love swirling around them lazily.

You are warm.

The body next to him kept getting warmer and warmer until...it moved.

Suddenly, Tom felt something was wrong. Something was different and Tom was not sure how. The ritual had to have worked; he had done everything perfectly. So why was he feeling that something was wrong?

Come take my hand and I'll take your hand

The warm presence vanished. Tom opened his eyes and saw a familiar hand sticking into the cauldron.

“Come,” a familiar voice said, almost laughing.

And I will bring you out.

Tom could do nothing but stare at the hand before reaching forward, impossibly slowly. Time seemed to slow down.

Come take the line and I'll take the line

His hand reached Harry’s hand and they linked, Harry’s hand impossibly warm, real...alive.

And I will pull you out.

The hand pulled Tom out and he saw blue skies, green grass, white clouds, and red flowers stretching out to the horizon and possibly further.

To swing In the sun.

“Let’s go,” Harry said, grinning. He spun around happily, hands reaching toward the heavens and face tilted up to the warm sun. The rays seemed to make Harry glow, turning him from simply alive to something greater...something bigger than life.

Come take my hand and I'll take your hand,

“Aren’t you coming?” Harry asked, slowing to a stop and throwing his hand back out.

To swing In the sun.

“Silly me,” Tom said, feeling all of the weight fall off of his shoulders almost involuntarily. He felt...free and happy. He wasn’t quite sure where he was, but Harry was here and that was what mattered. “Of course.”

swing in the sun.

Tom walked over to Harry, who had not stopped smiling.

swing in the sun.

“You know,” Harry began, beginning to walk to that endless horizon.

swing in the sun.

“I always knew you’d find me, somehow.”

swing in the sun.

“How could I not?”

swing in the sun.

They disappeared into the horizon, the rays of the sun, the push and pull of the wind and sky, leaving nothing but the faint sound of their laughter.