A/N: This is my first fanfic, so please be kind. I'd like to point out that in my story, the events of the 6th book are ignored. Also, in my potterverse, Sirus is not dead and Lucius Malfoy is not in Azkaban. Thoughts will be expressed it italics.

Disclaimer: All I own is the plot. Any people/places/things you may recognize belong to JKR.


Harry James Potter, son of James and Lily Potter, was confused. He sat on the grey stone floor outside Headmaster Dumbledore's office, twiddling his thumbs and occasionally glancing at the stone gargoyle only to realize that yes, it was still closed and yes, he would have to sit here longer. Harry would then let out an impatient sigh and turn to his best friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, only to realize that they too were staring at the gargoyle in frustration. This, however, was not what confused him.

For you see, across from Harry Potter sat Draco Malfoy, blonde git extraordinaire. Not only that, but his sneering father and stoic mother sat next to him. What confused Harry, though, was the lack of yelling. When Harry had plodded into the hallway and seen the peculiar family, he had expected a greeting filled with sneers and jeers. However, none had come. The Malfoys had barely spared Harry a glance before turning their eyes straight ahead and promptly ignoring him.

Harry didn't even know why he was here. He had simply been yanked out of the garden at Privet Drive by an anxious Remus Lupin whilst tending to his Aunt Petunia's petunias and brought to Hogwarts via floo. He was then told that Dumbledore was in a "very important meeting" and to "wait outside his office."

Harry glanced up at the stone gargoyle again, this time catching Draco Malfoy's eyes. He held the grey orbs for a moment, before they broke contact and the boy returned to ignoring Harry. He wondered again why he was here and why Lupin had thought it safe to deposit him in the company of a known death eater.

Just when Harry though he might be confused enough to actually ask Lucius Malfoy for help, he was saved. Looking to his left, Harry spotted his godfather and Lupin trotting down the hallway, followed by Molly Weasley, Moody, Snape, and other various members of the Order. They, too, walked in silence.

Harry glanced at the stone gargoyle again just for kicks (he'd stopped believing that it would open long ago) and was surprised to find that it was open! He could just see the tips of Dumbledore's golden shoes appearing at the bottom of the staircase and could barely conceal his excitement- he had been sitting out here for hours, after all!

Harry's joy was quickly squashed, however, when he saw menacing cloaked figure trailing behind Dumbledore. The pair reached the bottom and Albus smiled jovially at everyone before gesturing to his comrade. The man (Harry assumed) reached up to remove his hood and Harry's eyes widened at the sight that greeted him.

"You!" Harry swiftly stood and pointed his wand at the man. Everyone else in the hallway only stared at him bewilderedly except for Dumbledore, Snape, the Malfoys, and Ginny. For next to Dumbledore stood a young Tom Riddle, complete with wavy black hair and attractive chocolate eyes. Harry glanced at the members of the order, wondering why no one else had come to Dumbledore's aid, only to belatedly realize that they had never seen Tom Riddle in the flesh before.

"Take it easy, my boy!" Dumbledore soothed. Harry glanced from Riddle to Dumbledore and back again.

And he had thought he was confused before!

Still, Harry trusted Dumbledore's judgment and lowered his wand, still keeping his careful eyes trained on Riddle.

Dumbledore chuckled and swept down the hallway, throwing a "please follow me!" over his shoulder. The members of the Order obediently shrugged and turned to follow him into the Great Hall, leaving Harry, the Malfoys, and the Dark Lord standing in the hallway alone. Seeing that Riddle had not made a move to kill him yet, Harry cautiously turned and entered the Great Hall behind everyone else.


Harry shifted uncomfortably in his chair as he watched Dumbledore pace at the front of the Great Hall. It was obvious to Harry that, though the old man was trying valiantly to seem untroubled, something was on his mind.

For once, Harry knew exactly what that 'something' was.

After all, it's not every day that Harry and the Dark Lord sat in the same room without attempting to kill each other.

Before he had enough time to wonder exactly why Tom Riddle was calmly sitting across from him (and staring at him, no less!), Harry was shocked out of his musings- Dumbledore had stopped pacing and was regarding his guests with sparkling blue eyes.

"I've gathered you all here today because it seems we have a situation on our hands," Dumbledore started. "As you may notice, we have a few guests present tonight. Please welcome Lucius, Narcissa, and Draco Malfoy."

All those present (with the exception of Dumbledore and Tom Riddle) cast wary glances at the small family, as if checking to be sure that it was actually them. When it finally seemed as though no one would jump out from behind a stone column and scream "gotcha! Had you goin' for a second there," The Order turned back to the headmaster. The young stranger cleared his throat and Dumbledore studied him for a moment. Then, as if it were a side note, Dumbledore addressed The Order again:

"I would also like you to welcome Tom Marvolo Riddle."