Author's Note: This is one of those fics that just flashed out and simply insisted on being written ASAP. I was t00bing around the IDoS messages when I read about the November Romance Quote Challenge, causing a plot bunny to bite almost immediately. It was pretty rabid, that bunny. This fic was supposed to be a drabble but it managed to stretch itself long enough to become a pretty respectable ficlet that should not be taken seriously.
The Diary of a Mad Wizard
-Day One: The Hall-
"What are you doing here?"
Harry blinked. He stared at the boy in front of him, more surprised than afraid to find himself in an unfamiliar place. "I should be asking that question."
Tom wasn't pleased, and he didn't even try to hide it. "You shouldn't be here."
"I didn't even ask to be here." Harry's brow furrowed as he surveyed his surroundings. He was still in Hogwarts, his own school--fifty years into the past. The hall was bright; the walls hung with dozens of portraits of famous wizards and witches. But there was something wrong with those paintings... They were still, too still. Like the muggle photos in the Dursley's living room.
"Why aren't they moving?" He couldn't resist asking.
"This is my world, Harry Potter," Tom answered insolently. "I can make anything do whatever I want."
"I see. Of course *you* would do that."
Green eyes narrowed dangerously. "What do you mean?"
"You wouldn't want anything to remind you of living."
The eyes flared angrily for a moment, before changing back to the closed expression he always wore. "I want you to leave." Tom spun on his heel and walked away, leaving Harry alone in the corridor, staring at his back.
The Gryffindor didn't move for a while. He would have left... if only he knew how.
-Day Two: The Library-
"Why am I here in the diary?"
"I thought I told you to leave."
Harry rolled his eyes. This was going to be tougher than he thought. As if finding Tom in this maze of a school wasn't hard enough. "Trust me, I wouldn't stay here for the pleasure of your company."
"Then why are you still here?" Tom crossed his arms over his chest, refusing to warm up to the boy standing in front of him. He leaned back on the leather chair and raised his brow.
"I don't know how to leave," Harry admitted calmly.
"What? Then how in the world did you get here?"
"That was what I came here to ask you."
The chair scraped over the floor noisily as Tom stood angrily. "What do you mean you don't know!?"
"I meant exactly what I said: I. Don't. Know," Harry said flatly. "And don't yell at me, you're not my mother. Oh wait I forgot! You killed my mother!" He exclaimed sarcastically, slapping his forehead with a palm.
"I can yell at you any time I want, Potter," Tom sneered. "And I didn't kill your mother."
"But you will someday."
"Perhaps." Tom shrugged. He just started to walk out of the room when Harry's words sank in. "Why are you goading me with that argument, you morbid freak?"
Morbid freak? That did it. Harry finally snapped. "I'm a freak? Look who's talking. I spent the whole day yesterday trying to figure out a way to escape from this godforsaken place with no success!! I'm hungry, I'm sleepy, and I'm tired as hell but I can't do anything because I can't find a bed, there's no food, and I can't stay calm in a place as empty as this!!!" Harry panted after his tirade, looking at Tom resentfully.
Tom was stunned with the boy's outburst. For a few minutes, they did nothing but stare at each other, each silently daring the other person to say something.
"-like my home?" Tom asked quietly.
"No," Harry answered miserably. He was still upset with the situation. All he wanted at that moment was to go back to his room at Gryffindor Tower and sleep. "It's too quiet. And empty. As if no one lives here."
"I'm the only one here, Potter." Tom was smiling now, amused with Harry's distress. He thought for moment before speaking again. "Come, I'll bring you to the kitchens. There should be something there for you to eat."
"I've been there, there's no food," Harry said glumly. "There isn't even a single house elf to talk to."
"Of course. I don't need anyone else here. Trust me, I'll get you something." He walked to the door and stopped there, waiting for Harry to follow him.
"You know, for a sixteen year old, you're pretty pushy."
"And you're too outspoken for a kid your age."
"Yeah, well, I thought you looked different... So, do you want to eat or not?"
"Fiiiine..." Harry walked out and shut the library door behind them.
-Day Three: The Great Hall-
"So, what you're saying is... you can't get me out of here?"
Tom grunted in assent. "As you see, I've tried everything I could think of. But it's no use. You're still here." He took a bite off his toast, chewing mechanically.
"How could this possibly happen to me??" Harry cried. "I just fell asleep on my bed like every normal teenager would, and when I woke up, I suddenly found myself here in this diary with no means of escape! This is ridiculous! Am I supposed to stay here forever?"
Tom sipped his glass of pumpkin juice. "Do you expect me to answer that question?"
Harry sighed. "No. Put something on your toast. You're eating it dry." He pushed the butter over the table.
Tom pushed it back. "I like it this way." He opened his mouth, showing Harry the half-chewed mess of bread.
"I've been told that once before."
"Just once?" Harry raised a brow.
"Yeah, they usually said they loved me."
"Whatever." He threw his hands up in the air, surprising Tom. "I can't believe I'm eating breakfast in the Great Hall with only the soon-to-be-Voldemort for company!"
"Weeell... technically, I'm not yet Voldemort. But the name does have a nice ring to it." Tom rested his chin on his hands, staring at the air thoughtfully. "Hmm, it could work."
"Don't even *dream* of making me call you that," Harry threatened.
-Day Four: The Potions Dungeon-
"We're you good in Potions?" Harry couldn't resist asking.
"I was good in everything," Tom answered confidently. He poked at one of the shiny green bottles on the Potions Master's shelf. "And don't roll your eyes."
"How did you know I rolled my eyes?"
"I could feel you rolling your eyes behind my back."
"Hah! Tough luck. I didn't roll my eyes." Harry cackled as Tom faced him.
"What did you do then?"
"This." He stuck his tongue out.
-Day Five: Gryffindor Tower-
"You mean everything here is only possible because you willed them to be?"
The beds around Harry disappeared until his was the only one remaining.
"Wow..." Harry stared at Tom, open-mouthed. "Then why is this place so gloomy if you could do anything you want?"
"Gloomy?" Tom asked, puzzled. "It's peaceful."
Harry snickered. "The lake outside is peaceful, the garden is peaceful. This," he waved his arms around the place, "is gloomy."
"I never insulted your taste in decorating."
"I'm not insulting you, I'm telling you. This place needs more music. More life. People!" Harry stopped, remembering something. "Hey, the last time I was here there were people around. I remember seeing Dumbledore, Hagrid, and a few other folks. Where did they go?"
"They're in my memories. They don't have the freedom I have, so they remain as memories," Tom said matter-of-factly. "I'm used to staying here alone. Fifty years will teach you that."
"Fifty years..." Harry shook his head. "I'd go crazy. In fact, I'm not sure you're pretty sane yourself."
"Really? Why do you say that?"
"You removed all the beds! Where would you sleep? Wait... do you sleep? I've always slept first the past few days I was here."
Tom's lips curled. "A Slytherin doesn't sleep in Gryffindor Tower."
"Then what are you doing here?"
"Keeping the little boy company so he won't be too scared to sleep all alone."
Tom never did see the pillow that smashed into him a second later.
-Day Six: The Slytherin Dungeons-
"Potter..." Tom blinked sleepily. "It's three in the morning."
"I thought you said that this place had no time."
"Still, you're supposed to be asleep. Hell... I'm supposed to be asleep!"
Harry stared back for a minute, silently chewing the insides of his cheek. "I couldn't sleep. The Tower felt too empty."
Tom ran his hand down his face in exasperation. He sighed loudly, looking back at Harry with strained eyes. "All right, you can take one of the beds."
"Yes. Now sleep and don't bother me." He lay back and curled to his side, facing his back to Harry.
"You don't have to be so grumpy. I'm the only person in this place besides you."
If looks would kill, Harry would've been dead right now. "Good night, Harry!"
-Day Seven: The Quidditch Pitch-
"Hi Tom!" Harry waved cheerily. "Nice to see you up early."
"Come back down right now!"
"I SAID COME BACK DOWN! NOW!!"
Wondering why Tom seemed upset, Harry swooped back to the ground, landing neatly in front of Tom. "I raided the broom closet. I hope you don't mind. I kinda missed flying."
Tom shook his head. "That's all right. You're free to use the brooms. I don't fly myself."
Harry peered into his face. "Is there something wrong? You looked upset earlier."
"C'mon, tell me. What's wrong?"
"I woke up late today. I thought you were gone."
"Ahh." Harry's eyes twinkled. "You were upset at the thought of me being gone. How sweet, Tom. I'm touched."
Tom snorted. "I was upset that you're still here."
"Admit it, you would've missed me," Harry teased.
Tom flushed slightly. He turned his back on Harry and started walking back to the castle. "It's time for breakfast."
Grinning to himself, Harry followed, dragging the old broom with him.
-Day Eight: The Slytherin Dungeons-
"Harry! What the HELL are you doing here???" Tom stared at the bed beside him.
Harry blinked, still only half-awake. "Sshh. I'm trying to sleep."
"You're trying to..." Tom sputtered. "You're on my bed!"
"Yeah, yeah. It was cold." Sure enough, it was raining hard outside, and the whole room was chilly. "Now go back to sleep and try not to be noisy."
"How dare you order me around! You're in my diary, in my home, in my own bed!"
Harry sat up and faced the very irate Tom Riddle. "Look, Mr. Self-Important Slytherin, I was trying to sleep when your world suddenly decided to make everything extremely uncomfortable by starting a storm. I don't know how you possibly conjured it while sleeping, but it happened nonetheless. Instead of leaving myself to die on that other bed, I jumped in here with you. For one, you have thicker blankets. Plus, we'd share body heat, then we both live. Understood?"
". . ."
By the time Tom found the words to argue with him, Harry had fallen asleep.
-Day Nine: The Library-
Harry didn't really mind the fact that he just *slept* with Tom. After all, he had been right: Tom had thicker blankets.
So why was Tom cross with him?
"Why aren't you speaking with me. Is there any reason why you should avoid me?"
Tom sighed and put down the book he was reading. "I'm not avoiding you, Harry. I'm just reading quietly--you know, the way some people actually prefer to read."
"I know quiet when I see it. You are avoiding me. And I think I know why."
Tom raised a brow. "All right, genius. Tell me exactly why," he said sarcastically.
"You're bothered by the hard-on you got last night," Harry replied smugly.
-10 seconds later-
"THERE WAS NO HARD-ON! And forget about sleeping within ten feet of me later or any night in the future because it is *not* happening!"
"No hard-on!" Harry snorted. "If the *knob* poking my back was a dream then I'm a Muggle. But I'm proud of your self-control, Tom. I was trying not to grope you, myself."
For the second time in his life, Tom Riddle was actually speechless.
-Day Ten: The Astronomy Tower, Dawn-
"Toooooom..." Harry panted. "I. Can't. Take. This. Anymore."
"Well, that's just too bad, Harry-dear. I was just getting started."
"Holy Mother of- oh..."
"Maybe I should stop."
"No! No! Aaah!"
"Um, Tom... may be we should get up?"
"Are you tired of me yet?"
"Ha! Not a chance."
"Then why do you want to stop?"
"The sun's in my eyes. Let's move to the other side."
"Oh... Yeah, this one's getting sticky."
-Day Thirty: The Slytherin Dungeons-
"Yes?" he responded sleepily, snuggling Harry's neck. "What is it?"
"I... I know how to get out."
"WHAT?!" Tom was wide awake now. "You've been looking for a way to get away from me?"
"No! I would never do that," Harry replied in a wounded voice. "I just discovered it accidentally while browsing through the Library's Restricted Section."
Tom sighed. He should have known this day would come. "When did you find out?"
"Remember the day I teased you about your hard-on?"
"But that was ages ago!"
"Yes it was." Harry grinned. "I just thought that it might be better to stay a little longer."
"It's been a month." Tom said quietly. "It's your decision whether you'd like to stay or not."
There was a moment of silence. "I think I should go."
The words were painful to hear, but even more painful to accept. "You... you do?"
"Yes. I miss everyone, even Snape and his odious Potions class. I miss having a life," Harry finished honestly. "I just thought that... I should ask you first."
"You can go." Tom drew away from him. He moved to the other side of the bed, his back turned. "I don't need you here, anyway."
"Nope. You certainly don't."
"You sound a tad too happy about leaving," Tom couldn't resist adding. He was starting to get angry with both Harry and himself. Did the one month with him mean nothing to Harry? And why was he getting all worked up? He had been alone for fifty years. Surely, he could take being alone again without the brat.
"I have every reason to be." Harry moved to his side, snaking an arm around Tom's prone figure. He whispered, "After all, I'm taking you with me."
-Day Thirty-one: The Hall-
"Are you sure this is the only way?"
"Yes. I triple-checked the book."
"But I'm... we're..." Tom was almost too embarrassed to continue.
"Naked?" Harry grinned. "Well, we have to be, right? It's the only way to do it."
"Yes, I know. But what if somebody's there when we arrive." Tom turned into a lovely shade of red as he thought about it.
"That's the least of our problems. We should be worried about making this whole thing work, instead." Harry handed him a piece of parchment. "Here, you better memorize this spell, I don't want anything to go wrong."
A few minutes later, Tom spoke again, "I'm all set. You?"
"I'm okay." Harry gave him a thumbs-up from his position on the floor. "We better get going."
"I can't believe we're doing this." Tom flushed as he sat beside Harry. The stone floor felt cold against his skin.
"I can," Harry smiled, his eyes shining. "Imagine what we'll have over there. We'll have a future to look forward to."
"Yes, we will." He squeezed Harry's hand. "Although I'm a bit nervous about starting lessons again."
They smiled at each other. "Okay... we better start."
"Harry!" Ron burst through the bedroom door, surprising the only occupant inside. "You won't believe the news that's been traveling around school!"
"What is it?" Harry looked up, alarmed. "I just woke up."
"I suppose I can't blame you for sleeping too much. You must be tired after being away for one whole month doing that secret mission Dumbledore asked you to do."
"Yeah," Harry coughed softly. "I'm pretty tired. So, what's the news?"
"Yesterday, Colin Creevey was brought to the hospital wing, Stunned," Ron began. "Well, he was revived just today (that was one strong Stunning Spell). He's telling the whole school that he saw two naked men appear suddenly in the South staircase, cavorting like crazy, and the one on top Stunned him!"
"Hmm... that's interesting," Harry ventured. "Although I'm not sure if that's to be believed. You know Colin, he sees things."
"You're right." Ron looked slightly disappointed. "It would be crazy, though, if it were true. Are you sure you know nothing about that?"
"How could I, I arrived just a few hours ago, remember?"
"Oh, right. How could I forget?" Ron smacked his forehead. "Anyway, I better leave you to your rest. I'm going to go find Creevey. They say he got a picture of those two on the staircase, but I haven't seen it yet."
"WHAT?!" Harry jumped from the bed, wide-eyed. "He took their picture? But I swear his camera wasn't-" He suddenly coughed again, stopping just in time.
"He said he did," Ron answered, confused. "You know how he always brings that camera of his around."
"Um...uh.... Yes." Harry pulled his robe on hurriedly. "I'm a bit curious about this whole thing. I hope you don't mind if I tag along and help you find Colin."
"Of course not." Ron opened the door for him. "Before I forget, there's another thing going around. I heard Tom Riddle was back in Slytherin House. Some students saw him leaving Dumbledore's office with Snape. They even said he looked a lot like you. Now, that's one crazy rumor, huh?"
"Yeah." Harry shook his head. "The things some kids make up."
"Enemies, as well as lovers, come to resemble each other over a period of time."
- Sydney J. Harris
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