There would of course be consequences to his actions. The corporeal form of Herbert Selachii did not doubt that, the word always had consequences for men of consequence. Even dead men it appeared. But, grinning madly, he hoped that one of the few positives about being dead was that he would no longer be subject to those effects. It had been easier than he'd thought to commandeer a sheet of paper and a writing device. He remembered the shop assistants expression at seeing a, for all intents and purposes, blue man drag himself out of the river looking broken and dishevelled. He'd made a faint sound, like a bird sighing, and slumped to the ground unconscious. "Thank you," Herbert said, because manners were one of those things you didn't forget. Writing the thing itself had also proven problematic. Those wretched men had broken his wrists and fingers so much of his time was taken up by the time he at last signed it. His hour was almost up.
He could hear the skeletal clicking of Death's fingers against his hour glass. With a final flourish he turned and stared at the coal cloaked figure. "Must you really do that?"
Death tilted his hood to the side, hand stilling on the glass. I'm sorry. Was I disturbing you?
Herbert tried and failed to rally against a voice that clicked like coffin lids closing.
"Err, no. I just finished. How much time do I have left?"
Death did not look at Herbert's hourglass but said, Not long now. Is there anything else you wish to do? Anyone you want to see?
No. He'd been born into power, raised into it and saw no sense really in having to marry it. Especially if "it" had four fingers, a name that had more syllables than vowels and had once called you nephew. He'd had no children, not even the ones that most aristocrats had, who were a name on a cheque and sometimes not even that. He thought briefly about his violin, his dog Dim and his niece Sebby. Fortune had been leering when they gave Herbert a sister like Druisilla and a step brother like Feegle the feeble. Sebby had come then as a complete surprise. Small but bright and content enough to just sit and listen. Someone he could craft into something more than her parents had made of either one of her siblings. He wondered idly how she would cope without him. Picking up the paper again he wrote something else down, on the very bottom before folding it and sliding it into the tattered remains of his navy blue suit.
Are you ready, Herbert Johnathon Selachii?
Herbert nodded, and gripped the sides of his chair. "Yes. Would you do me a favour? When you see the bastards who did this to me, tell them I'll be waiting for them on the other side." He grinned a liquorice smile, "Oh. And that I lied about the elephants."
Death's scythe moved once, in a silence that cut through the air like a song, and severed soul from body in one stroke.
Elepahnts huh? The raven cloaked figure of Death said, staring down at the formerly living duke of Raservale. It's certainly about time.