I have always known I was different. I was 'special'. Child of a father who didn't want him. Child of a mother who wasn't loved. And I could do my little 'tricks'…

There was a boy younger than me at the orphanage. He was pathetic. A weakling who let the others intimidate him into submission. But he was being treated like I was. An outsider. And I thought perhaps that I might have a chance at friendship. After all, they hated us both.

One day I showed him one of my secret places. A place between the rotten walls of our dormitory and the one next to it. There with the rotting wood and peeling paint, I was safe. Looking back, I can see that he was frightened by my invitation and with good reason. I had made myself a terror to everyone who met me. It was a good survival method. If I didn't hurt them first, than they would hurt me.

We entered my secret place and I was laughing inside, knowing that the older boys would never find us. He was clumsy though. Clumsy and a fool. One of the old nails inside the walls caught him, ripping open his arm. The blood stains are still within the walls even now. Little brown spots to complement the rust stains. He let out a scream and was bawling like a baby at the wound.

I couldn't have that. He would give us away. How had he gotten through so many years at the orphanage without learning its first rule? You didn't cry. You didn't bring attention to yourself. Everyone knew that potential parents wouldn't want children who cried. Or laughed. Or smiled.

I put my hand over the wound and willed it to close, all the while telling the idiot boy to shut up in my fiercest whisper. He shut up when I removed my hand, and we both shared in shock at the faint scar that was still smeared with my bloody handprint. What an amazing trick. I sat there, considering my strange power in ways I had never thought of before. Just what could I really do? Was this the reason my father had abandoned me? Could I use this to my advantage? I didn't even notice when the fool slipped out of my secret place.

I sat there, my face shadowed by the flicker of the small candle I had smuggled in there over a year before. I had lit it only for the boy, since I had long gotten used to the dark. I gradually became aware of the noise outside the walls. The boys had come back, but no matter. They didn't know I was there. I was safe. I was alone.

But then I heard a voice, a voice I had heard crying in pain not long before. It told them where I was. Told them how to find me, and I felt my anger burst inside me, filling me up and washing outward. They grabbed my leg through the hole, pulling me out across the nails and the splinters of wood. I was bleeding before they even got to the rest of me.

My usual beating began, as the boys laughed at finding me in such a weak position. I took the punches, the kicks, the bites. I had eyes only for that foolish boy who had betrayed me. Betrayed me. Friendship was not an offer I made lightly. In fact, I have never offered it since. He would have been dead a thousand times over if my 'tricks' had fulfilled my wishes that night.

I set fire to his bed a month later. Nothing special. He wasn't even in it. It made me feel good though, as I watched his sheets go up in flames. Pity they got to it before it spread. I ran away shortly afterward, on my fruitless trip to see my thrice-cursed father.

The weakling died in a factory accident while I was gone. It happens often. A loose piece of clothing or hair gets caught in the machines. They don't stop them unless it will somehow endanger the product. It's why everyone at the orphanage makes sure their hair is cut short. Very short unless they want to have the machinery cut it for them.

Oh. But that doesn't happen anymore they say. Yes, and there are no dark wizards anymore. They all gave up and went back to raising puppies and butterflies.

I had a fight here in my dorm today. There is still blood on the carpet, though I'm sure the house elves will clean it up. They're such handy little creatures, and they never ask questions. It's an attitude I like to encourage, and one that my so-called peers are learning.

I cannot learn fast enough, and what I learn doesn't seem to fill me. There has to be a way to change all this. A way to get out, but I don't see it. Perhaps I am pathetic and weak for even considering…

Enough. I am Tom Marvolo Riddle. Bastard child of Satan himself. Condemned to Hell. But I promise, that if I have to live in Hell, than at least I shall rule it.

                                                            Tom Marvolo Riddle