"Jesus Christ, you're useless!"
Death raised his eyebrows, but nobody could see the gesture beneath his hood. The hood annoyed Death. He thought it made him look stupid. And scary. And, although he was Death, scary wasn't something he particularly enjoyed looking. Gave the old ladies heart attacks, as if creeping into their bedrooms wasn't enough. He shook his head, wondering for the thirtieth time why he had accepted the job in the first place.
Still, a job was a job, and when you had to choose between... well, being dead, or being reincarnated and being Death, there was really no comparison. He had taken the job immediately, not quite realising the practicalities of the job. According to the old Death, he was the worst one that had ever not lived.
"I'm not that bad," he muttered, pressing down the door handle and entering the child's room. "Aw, look at her lit-"
"What are you, a girl or Death? Man up, for Godsake!"
"No buts. She" the old Death pointed towards the girl in the bed. Blonde ringlets fanned out across the pillow, her eyes fluttering, steady breathing confirming the fact that she was indeed asleep, "needs to die. Get yourself together, the murderer will be here in a minute."
"You mean..." Death looked towards the child, "she gets murdered? Then why the hell am I here?"
The old Death sighed, wondering what would happen when he retired fully and left the idiot to himself. The world would most likely become over populated. "Because, idiot, after she's been murdered, she's still alive. Complicated business, but seriously. If you don't start taking lives away, there's going to be a whole load of people with massive holes in their chest walking around. How is any mortal meant to explain that, hmm?"
"I dunno. That's not my problem."
"I think it is, son. Look, in a few weeks, I've got to go back six feet under, to that goddam awful grave where I get eaten by spiders, and I will not be able to rest in peace, as you say, if I know you're still wandering around saving lives. You're Death!"
"Ok, ok, so-" Death was cut off by the creaking of the door. In walked a man, knife in his hand, all dressed in black. "Wow! It's like the movies!"
The old Death merely shook his head. There really was no hope.
It only got worse. As soon as the knife had been driven through the child's chest, her eyes jerking open and remaining so, Death gasped and ran towards her, frantic with worry. Almost like a Mother, the old Death observed. How was he meant to last one hundred years?
The murderer strolled out, his business done. Some murderers rather amused the old Death, and he wasn't easily amused. Proved by the fact he was not amused in the slightest by the idiot in front of him that he was meant to train. Sometimes, he wished he had just stayed in his grave like most people.
"So, what do I do now, boss?" Death chirped, straightening up from whispering to the child. It was half creepy, thought the old Death. Yes indeed. Who talked to dead children? No Death had done so before, and they were known for their creepiness. Although, the old Death supposed she wasn't exactly dead yet. No. That part was down to the boy stood in front of him.
"Have you got your scythe?"
"I thought as much. Right, well that's mainly just for show, so, I don't know, find a pencil or something. Just something sharp, kiddo." Death began rummaging around until he finally found a pair of safety scissors.
"Will these do, boss?"
Idiot kid, thought the old Death.
"I suppose so, so, you see that silvery thing?"
"Yeah! Yeah, I do!"
"Hunky dory. Well, cut through that. It will, in effect, make sure her soul dies, thus making her legally dead." The old Death recited exactly what his tutor had once told him. Ah. He remembered the man, extremely educated and perhaps a little too serious. Still. Far better than some previous Deaths. Like a former mad axe murderer who took extreme delight in killing off most of the population.The job of Death, really, was to properly kill those who were meant to die. Ill people, old people, murdered people... still, some took such delight in killing they just cut the strings of a whole lot of people and scientists blamed it on plagues and suchlike, secretly perplexed.
Somehow, he couldn't see the new Death doing that. He was clumsily hacking away at the silver string, tongue sticking out the side of his mouth.
The old Death rolled his eyes.
He was going to need a lot of training.