Yes, such is your hold on me that I still cannot call you out by your name. I was first introduced to you as an awkward teenager and years hence, I am terrified of you still. Growing up, Harry was my friend, someone I would turn to, almost instinctively, especially during difficult times. But, if Harry was my friend, you – my nemesis.
I recall when the first time your raucous laugh pierced through the silent night, how it sent shivers down my spine. And when you did not hesitate before attempting to kill baby Harry, I shuddered. I mean how could you even contemplate killing a child? Leave alone actually attempting to kill him. When you made puppets out of Inferi, I shrieked in horror. But, when you stowed away parts of your soul in horcruxes, I understood what you were actually capable of, in your pursuit of power and immortality.
You were no ordinary villain. But, one devoid of even the tiniest iota of humanity. Your kind of evil was endless, making me hate you and fear you simultaneously. And you evoked such unbridled hatred in my heart that a 12 year old is usually incapable of. Every time you would sink to a new low, in a bottomless pit of remorseless sins, I would inadvertently let out a soundless cry, of pure terror.
You exemplified how evil can transcend time and space and though you were only a fictional character, incarcerated within the pages of a book or the frame of a TV, your acts never ceased to shock me. What is surprising, however, is how even after all your acts – macabre and grisly, I still held out hope. Hope that one day, you will redeem yourself. Maybe, this could be attributed to the naïve teenager in me – the one who believed that there exists a redeeming quality, in everyone, including you. Sadly, but not surprisingly, you extinguished that ray of hope when you almost killed Harry. Again! I identify that moment as a turning point of sorts for me. Because that fateful day, the child in me finally grew up. She finally understood that some people cannot be redeemed, or rather they do not want to be redeemed.
Many villains existed before you and many have come after you, but the kind of monstrosity you unleashed in the world of magic, epitomizes what a true reign of terror actually looks and feels like.
Today, I can vouch for the fact that no villain can ever live up to the legacy that you left or conjure a world where the mere mention of their name creates a frenzy.
I detest you with a rare intensity, to the point of almost revering you, if that is even possible.
You were and always will be the worst villain the world of books has ever seen!