Same fonts apply for the thought communication between the twins.
Warning: This chapter is quite dark. Implied rape during the flashback portion. Starts after the part when Tom leaves to go to the kitchens.
2 years later
Tom knew life had to be better than what it was at the orphanage. The only respite that he and Lizzie had ever received was the yearly trip to the coast with the ocean, which was Lizzie's favorite, and the cave that was their special haven. Tom was proud that they had never let any of the other children set foot inside it, using the snakes and animals they could command at will and their mysterious abilities as a threat. The other orphans knew there was something different about Elizabeth and Tom Riddle, something out of the ordinary, something different, so they tried not to cross them. Tom for the most part was left alone because he scared all of the others, but Lizzie was not. She was so much smaller than everyone else at that age and because of her petite stature was bullied and picked on to no end, except when Tom was around to defend her.
Tom was amazed that after all these years of beatings and no meals, for the both of them, that Lizzie had been able to hold onto her innocence and belief in the world around them. Tom had long ago hardened has heart to all others, and vowed that the only other being he would ever love would be his sister. He knew somehow that after all these years Lizzie kept him from doing too many things that he would regret to the other children and to the matrons, and that she kept him from falling into the enticing darkness that called to him. But on one fateful day not long before the orphanage's annual trip to the coast that all changed and a little bit more of Tom was lost to the shadows. An event that occurred the week before the trip was the catalyst for Tom Marvolo Riddle to allow more hatred and evil into his heart.
FLASHBACK (A week before the trip to the coast, 1938)
Tom had left Lizzie, who was sick with food poisoning in their room, to go get some food from the kitchens. When the children were sick, the matrons made exceptions to the no food in the room rule. Lizzie, even in her weakened state, knew when Tom left the room and called out to him in her thoughts. Be careful brother. You never know who might be out there. Come back soon. I don't feel so well. Don't worry Lizzie. I'll be back with some food and wet cloths for your forehead shortly, all right? 'Kay. Love you Tom.
Tom smiled to himself, one of his rare smiles that lit up his usually cold eyes and face. As soon as the door closed, Lizzie closed her own eyes. She was having a hard time hiding it from Tom, but this sickness was bad enough that she could barely muster the energy to contact him telepathically. She didn't think she would be able to do it again for at least another hour. Lizzie lay there boneless on the bed, trying to relax and let herself sleep for the first time in the days, when the door opened again. Lizzie was extremely surprised that Tom would be back so soon, and was ready to tell him so when a hand clamped itself over her mouth. She opened her eyes with a start as she tried to bite the hand keeping her from screaming, but it held fast. She saw three of the eldest boys, each around the age of seventeen, gathered around her. One of them had his hand over her mouth, while the others held down her arms and legs. Even sick, no one ever said Elizabeth Salazara Riddle wasn't a fighter. She squirmed and kicked, trying to scream, but they just held her fast. Inside, Lizzie was mentally screaming. She knew what they were here for; they had done this before, working their way through all of the other girls Lizzie's age and subsequently being ignored by the matrons. She never thought it could happen to her though, Tom was always there to protect her and if he wasn't she could call out to him to come to her through their bond. She attempted this, trying to scream his name, but she knew inside that she wasn't strong enough. With that, she stopped fighting the boys, knowing that they had planned this, that they had waited for Tom to leave the room, and that they may have even made sure she ate bad food. She had to conserve her strength to be ready to mentally call for Tom. She could withstand this torment until then. She knew she could get through this; she had already survived everything else that had been thrust on her throughout the years. With that resolve in mind she watched with narrowed eyes as the door opened again, admitting Billy Stubbs and Dennis Bishop.
Dennis walked forward first. "Hey bitch. You ready for this? You're the only one left. We've taken turns you know, all of us. Billy and I wanted to go last because we wanted you. We saved the best for last," he said almost conversationally. He pushed up her skirt, ripped off her underwear, and began unbuttoning his pants. That's when Lizzie knew she could not wait any longer; she gathered her strength and screamed her brother's name in her mind. Tom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
At the Same time in the kitchens
Tom was quietly talking to one of the cooks in the kitchen as Mrs. Cole helped him gather some water and bread to take his sister. He was happy inside, and excited to bring a smile to his sister's face for the first time in a long time when she saw that Mrs. Cole was able to spare a piece of chocolate; Lizzie had always loved chocolate ever since she had been little. Then, he heard his sister's voice in his head in a tone that he had never heard her use before, one full of pain, anger, sadness, and even a little hate; it was a tone of desperation, something Tom was sure Lizzie had never felt even with their experiences in the orphanage. Tom took off running, the piece of chocolate still clutched in his fingers. Mrs. Cole and the cook looked at each other, and took off after him. Tom reached the door first and threw it open, and what he saw there he would remember for the rest of his life. It was at that time when his hatred of muggles truly started.
Tom broke the skin on his hands as he balled them into fists. He needed the pain, especially now only a week after his sister had been violated. Lizzie was at the orphanage in bed while Matron Cooper, who still thought Lizzie was faking her illness and who had beat her so many years before, watched the house. He hadn't wanted to leave her alone, but she had insisted that he leave and enjoy himself at the beach. He looked up ahead at the front of the line where Billy Stubbs, Dennis Bishop, and all of their muscular cronies were walking as the children headed over the hill to the coast. He would have his revenge in the cave. He thought back to what he had seen them doing to his sister. He had stood there, stunned at the scene in front of him. He could vaguely remember that both of the women behind him had fainted, and afterwards had blocked out what had happened to Lizzie, his sister, his responsibility.
They hadn't even punished any of the boys and in fact only remembered that Lizzie had been throwing up when they walked in, which added to their refusal to do anything. Tom would never forgive them for that either, just like he would never forgive the boys. Lizzie's innocence had been shattered, firmly and irrevocably, even though she still tried to calm Tom down when he was ready to go on the rampage and presented a happy facade to the world. Even with all this to Tom's astonishment, Lizzie still was determined to see the best in people, elevating her even further in the eyes of her brother.
Since that night, Tom had been planning what he would do. He had hung Billy's rabbit from the rafters, using his powers, the day after the incident as the first step, had stolen keepsakes and treasures for all of the other children, and was ready to break all of the boys just as they had broken his sister. As they walked over the hill and the ocean came into view, Tom was fully ready to take his revenge.
Mrs. Cole didn't know what had happened to Elizabeth in that room, but she knew it was something dark enough that it had caused her brother to become even more violent toward the other orphans, her charges. In a way, she almost blamed Elizabeth for that and whatever rubbish she had made up this time. Mrs. Cole cursed the day that that Gaunt woman had shown up at her orphanage with the twins. She knew there was something strange about them, something that scared all of the others. She was calmly sitting on the bus, immersed in her thoughts, waiting for the rest of the children to board.
She hadn't even realized that the only ones missing were Tom, all of the older boys, and a girl, Amy Benson, who had been in charge of the food that had caused Elizabeth's food poisoning, until they got on the bus. Tom was leading them with an almost smug smile on his youthful face, holding a few shells in his hands as well as the picture she had taken earlier of his and Elizabeth's favorite cave. She looked at all the boys' and the girl's faces, her gaze lingering on Dennis's, Billy's, and Amy's, which were all suspiciously blank. Their eyes looked dead and they looked as though they had seen immeasurable horrors. Of course, being the insipid woman she was, she just smiled at them all and waved with a cheery air at the bus driver telling him it was time to go. Little did she know that Tom had taken his first steps into the darkness that would eventually consume him, and that the other children would never be the same again.
Tom opened the door to their room, remembering how good it felt to take revenge on the others in the ways that he had wanted to. He almost smiled before remembering the state his sister was in. He looked over at her and was happy to see that she was finally sleeping without nightmares, and that she looked better than she had in weeks. Tom placed all of the shells along the windowsill and clipped the photo to the wardrobe. He looked over at Lizzie again, noticing something that he hadn't before. There were three garden snakes on her pillow and one in her hair, all staring at him as though he was intruding. One hissed in her ear and she started awake, curling in on herself in fear. Tom ran forward taking her into his arms, causing the snakes to hiss indignantly.
"Oh that's just Tom, he won't hurt us. He saved us," Lizzie said to the snakes, her voice sounding raspier than usual and then to Tom, "How was the beach, Tom?"
Tom grabbed onto his sister's hand, trying to offer her more comfort. "It was nice Lizzie,but not as good as it is with you" he said in a soft voice, " I don't think we should meet in our cave anymore, love."
"Why? What did you do?' she couldn't help but ask, even though deep inside she already knew the answer and it made her shiver, goose flesh appearing on her arms.
He felt her shiver and rubbed her arms consolingly, not knowing the real cause.
"Nothing you wouldn't have wanted me to do sister dear," Tom replied in a self-satisfied voice that sent more chills down his sister's spine. Now go back to sleep, Lizzie. I love you and will always watch out for you. Nothing will ever hurt you when I'm here.
Lizzie fell asleep, putting all thoughts of what Tom had done in the cave away for a later time as Tom watched over her into the early hours of the morning,holding her while she suffered through the nightmares that were now a common occurrence. Neither knowing that in the next month would come changes that had never even crossed into the realm of their wildest dreams.
Next chapter: Dumbledore comes, and misreads the twins.
What do you all think so far? Reviews are much appreciated.