Collecting

"I wish to add 'Unborn Baby' to two of my policies along with a suicide clause for each. And I would like to double the coverage of both sets of parents."

The goblin's slanted eyes shifted to look upon the person seated opposite him in the dimly lit office of Gringotts Insurance division.

"Certainly you can do that, but you do have a number of policies to maintain, and most of those covered are vital and young. Although the benefits in the event of death is very substantial, your investment could be draining on your holdings. I just want to make you aware of that," the creature said.

"Even one claim will more than cover my expenditures. I know what I'm doing," the wizard said, his eyes glinting in the firelight.

"It still seems rather reckless . . . insuring healthy young people and unborn babies, with a suicide clause no less. How would a baby suicide?"

Lucius Malfoy smiled knowingly.

"Who said the child would be a baby when it happens? Now, double the coverage on the Potters and the Longbottoms like I've instructed, as well as their unborn children," he demanded.

"Very well, Lord Malfoy. It's your Galleons," the goblin said, adding the new terms. "But, again I say, it's not a good investment."

"We'll see."

**************************************

Eighteen years later, Lucius Malfoy sat in the same office, but with a different goblin. The original underwriter of his policies had been ripped to pieces by his coworkers when Lucius cashed in two policies on the Potters years ago, and cancelled the one he held on the Longbottoms. A solicitor stood beside the blond wizard, the low torchlight flicking over them.

Several steely-eyed goblins stood around the desk, looking at the policy resting on it.

"But Harry Potter is alive," one goblin hissed.

"A technicality, I'm afraid. It is common knowledge that Mr. Potter did indeed die and was dead for several minutes before he returned to life. It is in the history books and has been investigated by the foremost authorities. And since Harry Potter was indeed dead, Mr. Malfoy is within his rights to collect on his policy," his solicitor stated firmly.

Lucius gave the goblins a small smile.

"This should be illegal! Clearly, Lord Malfoy had inside information!"

"And if you like that, my goblin friend, you're going to love this. He suicided, so that doubles the payout," Lucius purred. "He went to Voldemort intent on martyring himself. That equates to suicide."

The goblins burst out into shrieks and frenzied dancing about as Lucius watched them have conniptions. He had maintained that policy on Harry for forever it seemed. And it had finally paid off.

As did the ones he held on Dumbledore, Sirius Black, the Weasleys, Bellatrix, and even Tom Riddle himself.

The Malfoy vaults at Gringott's wouldn't be emptied anytime soon.

He thought he and Narcissa might take a little vacation.

"You see, Bartleby," the noble said loftily to his solicitor, twirling his silver-tipped cane as the goblins filed out to get his money, "there is a profit to be made in dead peasants."

***************************************
A/N: For the first time, I am adding an "acknowledgement" list identifying all those those who inspired this little one shot. These are the companies that take out life insurances policies (which are ACTUALLY called "Dead Peasant Policies") on their employees without their permission and don't give the bereaved families any of the payout.

To the People Behind the Policies that Inspired this Fic:

Thank you so much for your death-for-profit policies where people are more useful to your business dead rather than alive. Thank you for your lack of sensitivity concerning grieving families and for not using the money you collected from the death of their loved ones to help pay funeral costs, or outstanding bills or for the upkeep of their children. Thank you for crunching the lives, dignity, and potential of human beings in your employ down to nothing more than monetary gain.

I'm sure a very special place awaits you all in the Afterlife/Great Beyond.

I'd bring a fan.

My Inspiration

ADAC Laboratories

Advanced Telecommunication Corp.

Aeroquip Vickers Inc.

Alabama Power Co.

Alfa Corp.

Allegheny Technologies Inc.

Allergan Inc.

Allfirst Financial Inc.

Amegy Bank, N.A.

American Business Products, Inc.

American Electric Power

American Express Co.

American Greetings Corp.

American Management Systems Inc.

American Seafoods Group LLC

Ameritech Corp.

Amerus Group Co.

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation

Appalachian Power Co.

Arch Chemical

Aristech Chemical Corp.

AT&T Communications

Atlantic Richfield Co.

Avery Dennison Corp

Avon Products Inc.

B. F. Goodrich Company

Ball Corporation

Bank Boston

Bank Of America

Bank One Corp.

Barnett Banks Inc.

Bassett Furniture Industries Inc.

Be Aerospace Inc.

Bear Stearns Companies

Bellsouth Corporation

Boise Cascade Corp.

Boston Company

Boston Federal

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

Camelot Music, Inc.

Carolina Power & Light Co.

Carpenter Technology Corp.

Catskill Financial Corp.

Central Power & Light Co.

Ch2m Hill Companies Ltd.

Charming Shoppes, Inc.

Checkfree Corp.

Chemical Banking Corporation

Citibank, N.A.

Citizens Bank

Clark Inc.

Clorox Company

CNF Inc.

Coca-Cola Company

Columbus Southern Power Co.

Commercial Intertech Corp.

Compass Bank (Florida & Alabama)

Computer Technology Associates Inc.

Consolidated Natural Gas Co.

Consolidated Rail Corporation

Cox Enterprises, Inc.

CTA Inc.

Cymer Inc.

Diamond Shamrock Inc.

Diebold Inc.

Dime Bancorp Inc.

Dow Chemical

Earle M. Jorgensen Co.

Eastman Kodak Company

Eaton Corp.

ECC Capital Corp.

Enserch Corp.

F&M Bancorp

FiberMark Inc.

Figgie International Inc.

Fina Oil & Chemical Company

First Bank System Inc.

First Commonwealth

First Midwest Bancorp Inc.

Fleet Bank

FleetBoston Financial Corp.

Flightsafety International Inc.

Frontier Bank

Fulton Financial Corp.

GATX Corporation

Georgia Power Co.

GNC Corp.

Great Plains Energy Inc.

GTE Corporation

Gulf Power Co.

HCR Manor Care Inc

Hechinger Company

Heritage Commerce Corp.

Herman Miller Inc.

Hershey Foods Corporation

Hillenbrand Industries, Inc.

Hosiery Corporation of America

Houghton Mifflin

Household Finance

Hovnanian Enterprises Inc.

Hughes Supply Inc

ICI Americas, Inc.

Idaho Power Company

IKON Office Solutions Inc.

Indiana Michigan Power Co.

Integra Bank Corp.

Intermark Inc.

Iowa First Bancshares Corp.

Iroquois Bancorp Inc.

J Jill Group Inc.

JP Morgan Chase & Co.

Kansas City Power & Light

Kansas Gas & Electric Co.

Keithley Instruments Inc.

Kentucky Power Co.

Keycorp Ohio

Kimberly Clark

Korn Ferry International

Laser Master Int'l. Inc.

Linens N Things Inc.

LKQ Corp.

Louisiana Pacific Corp.

Manor Care Inc.

Marriott International Inc.

McDonnell Douglas Corp.

Media General Inc.

Medicalcontrol Inc.

Menasha Corporation

MidAmerican Energy Co.

Miix Group Inc.

Mississippi Power Co.

MNC Financial Inc.

Mueller Industries Inc.

National City Corporation

NationsBank

Nestle Enterprises

Norfolk Southern Corp.

Norfolk Southern Railway Co.

Northern States Power Co.

Ohio Power Co.

Old National

Olin Corporation

Owens & Minor Inc.

PacifiCorp

Panera Bread Co.

Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Company

Parker Hannifin Corp.

Penn Treaty American Corp.

Penns Woods Bancorp Inc.

Phibro Animal Health Corp.

Philipp Brothers Chemicals Inc.

Phoenix Companies Inc.

Pinnacle Financial Services Inc.

Portland General Electric

Potlatch Corporation

PPG Industries

Procter & Gamble Company

PSS World Medical Inc.

Public Service Co. of New Mexico

Public Service Co. of Oklahoma

Public Service Enterprise Group

Questech Inc.

R. R. Donnelley & Sons Company

Ruddick Corp.

Ryder System Inc.

Sallie Mae (Stud Ln Mktg Assoc.)

Savannah Electric & Power Co.

Sequa Corp.

Service Merchandise Co., Inc.

Shearson Mortgage

Sherwin-Williams

Sky Chefs

Smart & Final Inc.

Smith Barney

Sonoco Products Co.

Southwest Bank

Southwest Water Co.

Southwestern Bell Corp.

Southwestern Electric Power Co.

Southwestern Public Service Co.

Star Banc Corp.

Stauffer Management Company

Steelcase Inc.

Sturgis Bancorp Inc.

Summit Bank of N.J.

Swank, Inc.

Tellabs Inc.

Tenet Healthcare Corp.

Texas Eastern Transmission Corp.

Tompkins Trustco Inc.

TXU Corp.

TYCO International

UniFirst Corp.

Union Bank

United National Bancorp

Urocor Inc.

Vineyard National Bancorp

W. R. Grace & Company

Wachovia Corporation

Walgreen Company

Wal-Mart Stores

Walt Disney

Wang's International, Inc.

Wells Fargo, N.A.

West Coast Bancorp

West Texas Utilities Co.

Westar Energy Inc.

Western Aire Chef Inc

Western Resources, Inc.

Westpoint Pepperell

Winn Dixie

Winnebago Industries Inc.

Woolworth Corporation

Xcel Energy Inc.

York Water Co.

Zale Corp.