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The next week or so flew by in a blur, though a surprisingly enjoyable one. The fifth years worried about O.W.Ls, but Katherine knew they weren't really all that bad; she'd managed to swipe a couple of O's in her best classes two years prior, so she tried not to stress. Katherine was happy with her class schedule; her teachers were great at what they did. A few of the professors were new to her, while others were younger but familiar versions. She was especially delighted to see Professor Dumbledore had auburn hair in his younger years. Though classes were very busy and tedious, Katherine was happy to have found friends within her new House, though Silver proved to be her closest. Still, she would sometimes find herself longing for her old friends in her own time, or wishing for a letter from the Weasley twins.

Katherine had only one class with the Slytherins, and it just so happened to be her worst subject: Potions. She'd always compared it to the Muggle chemistry she'd been briefly introduced to at the orphanage which, not surprisingly, she was also terrible at. She managed to scrape by, with a lot of help from Silver. It had always infuriated Katherine to no end that Potions could be so difficult, especially in a roomful of Slytherins, and especially with the best Potions student sitting in her class.

“If I hear Slughorn say, 'Oho, Tom, you've done it again!' I'll thump him, I swear I will,” Silver was saying one morning as she and Katherine walked to the Great Hall. A pair of first years looked at her, slightly frightened. “I mean, I work hard in that class and get no recognition!”

Katherine laughed. “You're constantly invited to ole Sluggy's parties. If I remember correctly, you said he's been inviting you-”

“Since first year, yeah, yeah,” Silver finished with a dismissive wave of her hand. “But I wouldn't be caught dead at one of those old things, yuck.”

“But then you can't deny he's recognized you, Silver, admit it,” Katherine said as she seated herself at the Ravenclaw table and helped herself to buttered bread. “The only reason he actually thinks I've got the slightest in Potions is because I sit next to you.”

“Yes, Kat, I know,” Silver answered, attacking her scrambled eggs. “But it'd be nice to hear, 'Oho, Miss Ardova, you really are good!' once in a while.”

Katherine snorted. “He'll regret it when you get an O in your Potions O.W.L, you'll see.”

Silver had agreed and continued her ranting, but Katherine was no longer listening; she had glanced at the Slytherin table in search of her target, but she'd done so halfheartedly, seeing as Tom Riddle was nowhere to be found during breakfast these days. She had a bad feeling about whatever he was getting up to, but he gave no clues. Riddle was still in class, and he even acknowledged Katherine in the halls. If she didn't know better, she'd assume he was just a normal, albeit brilliant boy. But she needed desperately to find information.

Katherine took the opportunity to interrupt Silver's incessant speech when the chatty girl finally took a swig of her pumpkin juice. “Hey, Silver, can I ask you something?”

“Yes, of course. What is it, Kat?”

“Can you...” Katherine furtively looked around, assuring that no one could eavesdrop, then lowered her voice just to be safe. “Can you tell me about that boy you were just talking about, Tom Riddle?”

“Well, what is it you'd like to know?”

“I dunno... what's he like? I mean, he's kind of... odd, don't you think?”

“He is quite odd,” Silver admitted, and she instinctively glanced over at the Slytherin table, where Katherine knew he would not be. “Brilliant, but quite the oddity.”

“Well, what's he like?” Katherine persisted. For all her talkativeness, Silver was being awfully quiet.

Silver took a sip of her juice pensively. “In all honesty, I don't know much about him. I doubt anyone does, really. He's rather a lone wolf, likes to do things on his own; he's an introvert, regardless of how charming he is. Though, he really is very polite, to tell truth. I dunno... he's very clever, he's got a sense of humor on him too, when he wants to show it. It's sort of strange... I mean, I've only ever seen his lovely, social side, though for all his socialite qualities it does seem people repel him more than the usual. I'm not sure what you want to know, Kat,” she finished her tangent, finally raising her eyes at Katherine questioningly, the blank look strongly reminding her of Luna Lovegood.

Katherine blushed. “Oh, well, I dunno, I sort of bumped into him the other day and he just seemed... I dunno, different, I suppose?”

Silver nodded. “He is. He's from an orphanage, as I believe you are? Raised as a Muggle, but his magic is so exceptional it's a bit unnerving. And those eyes... I mean, I know he's top student and Prefect and all, but he is not someone I'd like to cross. I don't believe I've ever seen him explode, but I doubt it'd be a pretty sight. He'll be big one day. Very big.”

A chill ran up Katherine's spine. Indeed, he would be big one day. “I don't doubt that,” she said softly, glancing back at his empty seat. A gang of Slytherin boys surrounded it; they looked mean, laughing and joking with their large, cruel smiles. “Those are his, er, friends?”

Silver turned to look where Katherine was staring and she nodded. “Daft prats if you ask me. Vile things, especially those Malfoy and Dolohov boys. I think they hang around Riddle for attention and praise. Dimwits can't do anything worthy of their own adulation.”

Katherine smirked at her friend. “You seem to have a lot of hatred towards them. Previous events I don't know about?”

She was surprised to see a scarlet wave creep up Silver's neck as she put her head down against the table. “Don't tell anyone, alright?” She asked, her voice muffled.

“I promise, Silver. Just pick your head up, people are staring,” Katherine added under breath.

Silver picked her head up, showing her flaming face and looking shamefully at Katherine. “Alright, alright. So... my parents are slight lunatics. I mean, not as mental as the Slytherin kids' parents, but they say they want Celeste and I to marry into Pureblood and keep our status going. These summer holidays, my folks and Malfoy's got together and decided they'd have us going on dates and that, to see if we'd marry. I mean, imagine marrying that git... argh!”

Katherine laughed. “Come on, Silver. It couldn't have been that bad, right?”

“Oh, but it was. He took me out for dinner, got me plastered, and then tried perving his way to my heart!” Silver whisper-cried. “And... and Kat, I let him. He was so charming that I thought maybe he was different. I mean, Alphard Black turned out alright, didn't he?”

That must be Sirius' grandfather, Katherine thought. And this Abraxas Malfoy bloke must be Draco Malfoy's grandfather.

“And then he tried sticking his filthy hands up my skirt, so I gave him a good one on the nose. He was so furious he took me home and told my parents I'd never marry because I wasn't a 'proper lady' and I was out getting sloshed with boys I barely knew,” Silver sneered hotly, glaring directly at Malfoy. “To think I actually liked him! For a Ravenclaw, that really was dim of me. I hear he's with that batty Black girl, to top it off. The humiliation!” Silver buried her face in her hands.

Katherine couldn't help but laugh at her friend's predicament. If Malfoy could see who his grandmother could have been. “You're really getting your knickers in a twist over that monstrous idiot? Merlin, look at his hair; it's revolting!”

A few of the girls in front of Katherine quirked their eyebrows at her choice of words, but Silver laughed enthusiastically, appreciating her friend's insults. “My knickers are most certainly not in a twist, especially over that idiot.”

“Oh, shut up, “ Katherine said with an eye roll. She picked up her school bag and grabbed her friend's arm. “Did you not hear the bell or are you simply ignoring everyone that isn't Malfoy?

Silver threw a bread roll at Katherine's face and begrudgingly stood up, both girls heading to their Charms lesson. Katherine was pleased to have Professor Flitwick as her Head of House; she'd adored McGonagall, but Professor Flitwick was simply adorable, and he shared a passion for her best subject. Charms and Defense Against the Dark Arts had always been her best subjects, giving her a punch when it came to dueling. Besides that, however, she was only barely deserving of the title as Ravenclaw.

“Oi, you don't have to slap me around,” Katherine said, jerking her arms away from Silver. Silver gave her a pointed look. “What?” Katherine hissed, but then followed Silver's gaze to someone walking down the corridor, nearing them.

Tom Riddle smiled politely at them. “Good morning, Miss Ardova, Miss O'Hara,” he called, continuing on his way.

“Good morning, Riddle,” Silver muttered at his retreating figure. She waited until he was out of earshot before turning on Katherine. “Well?”

“Well what?” Katherine asked nonchalantly, turning back to the direction they'd been heading in.

“For all those questions on Tom Riddle, you really don't say much to him,” Silver snorted, pulling at a string on her shirt. “Is there a particular reason why?”

Katherine rolled her eyes skyward. All of the insubstantial conversation topics Silver bothered to discuss did not make her an insubstantial person. In fact, Katherine was beginning to notice just how observant and intelligent Silver really was. If anything, Silver's close attention to detail could eventually even become a nuisance. “No, Silver, no reason. I'm just curious about him, is all.”

“Do you think he's cute?”

“What?” Silver had really just asked if Tom Riddle was 'cute.' Puppies and Pygmy Puffs and owlets were cute. Not Lord Voldemort. “Eurgh, no, Silver, why would you even-”

“Now I know you're lying,” Silver scoffed. “Everyone and their grannies will agree that Tom Riddle is easily the handsomest boy in school.”

“Can we please move on with our lives? So I'm curious about perfect Prefect Riddle; you're in lo-o-ve with Abraxas Malfoy!”

Silver glared pointedly, turning the corner that led to the Charms classroom. Katherine had hardly noticed they'd gone up two staircases. She wondered what Riddle's next class was. She really was doing a lot of wondering about him, but he was constantly out of her reach, hardly even inhabiting the same school as her. How infuriating. I'll just have to work my way towards him, she thought. I'll play my cards right and try to get closer. And then, I'll figure out what he's up to.

“Kat, you are always off in some other world, it's quite unsettling, to say the least,” Silver was saying. “Well, off we go. And do try not to get along so nauseatingly well with Professor Flitwick. Really, he'll probably ask your hand in marriage one of these days, claiming he couldn't escape the charm of your 'excellent wrist work.'”

Katherine smacked Silver's arm.


For the umpteenth time that day, Katherine rolled her eyes, then opened the door to the classroom.
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Hi! Sorry for the delay, I've actually been doing stuff with my summer break. I apologize if this seems a little slow right now. I need to get the expository elements out of the way, but I promise things will get interesting very soon! I love Silver; she makes me laugh. I'm also trying to include the flavor of Katherine's character and mentality, if you will; Order member or not, she's still an ordinary teenager. And lastly, THANK YOU to my readers and subscribers! Do comment something though, I hate silence. Until soon!