Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters mentioned.

The Temptation of chocolate

Tom Riddle has always thought the Gryffindors to be foolish. Naïve, even.
He watches them make the same mistakes over and over again, and they will, or so he thinks, probably never learn.
If you ask them why they did it again, you always get the same, daft answers, as if they have learnt them by heart.

To Tom's ears they all sound the same:
"My friend was in trouble. I had to help him" or
"It's what your mind tells you to do in the right moment. You just feel you have to do it."

Tom snorts, disgusted. Bravery, Loyalty, Friendship…Love.
Words like smoke, they vanish too quickly ,they are meaningless.
Friends. He has no friends. He has only obedience and yes, he knows, they fear him-
Power is all what counts.

Life's hard school has taught him that. To know what lies within your abilities, to test yourself, to prove yourself worthy for every challenge.
But in a hidden little corner of his mind -he has until now successfully managed not to think about its existence- he also envies them, for their stupid bravery.

Tom can see them all gloat in their Gryffindor golden light when they walk by, bravery and foolishness written in big golden letters on their faces.
Yet they are arrogant and treat Slytherins like scum, so they only get what they deserve in return.
Tom guesses he would respect the Gryffindors, if they only wouldn't be that loyal and that self-confident and act like bloody naïve lunatics all day long.

Sometimes, in that hidden little corner, he wishes for himself to have that naivety again, that firm belief in the world's goodness, to be able to face everything, without even thinking of the consequences because your honest mind tells you to do so.

They are naïve like children, Tom thinks and tries to ban the thought out of his head, that he wishes to be as carefree as them again, because Slytherins can't think like that.

She, she is like them of course. Gloats with them, bleeds with them for their foolish mistakes, laughs with them .
She is like them, the epitome of all what Gryffindor is and yet she is different.

She isn't afraid of him, no, she even talks to him, when everyone else would back off and run away, but somehow, ever when talking with her, he feels as if she can see right through him and knows all his secrets…not a feeling he particularly likes. He doesn't know what to think of her…

She loves chocolate - she tells him ever so often….and sometimes he's wondering whether he should hex her already.
It's temptation, she tells him sometimes and her embarrassed laughter can be heard through the entire hall at his blank stare.

Perhaps he acknowledges her cleverness - she is equal to him, he thinks- and perhaps he has also noticed the beauty of her thick, black, braided hair and her green eyes…but only maybe….Or has he?
He rather chooses not to answer at all, because Tom Riddle doesn't like questions to which he hasn't got an answer.

For her, temptation was always chocolate.
It is black like chocolate, black like dark, sugar-sweet rare chocolate, black like dark raven hair and dark blue attentive eyes.
Chocolate… Tempting you to try, even if you know you shouldn't.
They haven't got much chocolate now…chocolate is expensive…
Of course in Hogwarts, she could order it from the House Elves…but she loves it the "Muggle Way"… and she can't have it the Muggle way, because of that terrifying war.

She closes her eyes, sitting on the window sill and leans back, back in the curtains. She can smell the dust and the sweat of long years.
It smells like forever.

It smells of age and old, wrinkled hands…She imagines an old woman sitting in front of a desk, who reads something, her hands are shaking ever so slightly.
The woman has dark, already greying hair and green, expressive eyes.
She wears glasses and the silent watcher can't shake off the weird feeling of familiarity.
Is it a dream or reality?
The line gets a little bit blurred for her sometimes, as if she were only dreaming her life.
Suddenly the woman looks to the curtains and the girl shudders, when she looks in her direction
"Tom Riddle is evil", the old woman says suddenly. "Stay away from him,or it will be both your and my downfall once again."
The Gryffindor student scrambles away, terrified.
She falls out of the open window…and falls….and falls-- and wakes up, sweating.

Slytherin stands for temptation as well , she thinks, sometimes, in dark hours when she is alone and thinking about everything and nothing.
Red is Gryffindor…red like life, red, children of the fire, brave and lively.
Green is Slytherin…green like untouched forests and dark lakes without a bottom; green, children of the earth, cruel, studious…and lonely.

Then, when she is not thinking about -even if she doesn't ever forget-belonging to Gryffindor and nowhere else,she finds her thoughts wander once again to chocolate.
Half-bitter chocolate.
She has always liked things which aren't completely pure or clear.

And he is her half-bitter chocolate, fake innocence, as if they were all mere actors in the ordinary play of life, with darkness lurking beneath the surface.
Slytherins are stuck-up, arrogant, cruel bastards and nothing can change her opinion of that. But she also sees their ambitions and their thirst for knowledge, listens to their sliver tongues…and sees their countless mysteries. And her interest is awakened… since they offer her dark, bitter chocolate… But…she is disgusted by this offer, isn´t she?

He is like them, she knows.

Perhaps even worse. He is like the darkest, sweetest chocolate imaginable, the best of all, but he can't fool her like he fools the teachers, can't wrap her in his sugar sweet lies...His charm can't help him with her either…but he doesn't even have to use it. With her, he can just be Tom, just Tom because she is beyond saving, she is far beyond simply liking him, and if he will fall, she will jump after him.

Yet she doesn't trust him completely and she thinks that he doesn't either.
Nevertheless she loves him, loves him with all her Gryffindor golden heart and there is no way she will ever stop loving him.

He is dangerous and she knows.
He is difficult and she knows.
But he is lonely and she knows, too. Hasn't she always liked to solve riddles…?

At dinner, a package is lying next to her plate.
It is wrapped in nothing but simple, white paper, and she opens it under the curious glances of her classmates.
The paper crinkles under her hands and she quickly smooths it, feeling his eyes on her the whole time.

Inside is nothing but a red rose and a black, plain bar of chocolate…made the Muggle Way.
She raises her eyes and meets his- sugar sweet treacherous promises.
However she doesn't turn him down.

Now she often has dark, black half-bitter chocolate and false innocence and she always enjoys it, every time, because she knows, it has ended before it even began and in the end, she will have nothing but smoky words and the faintest taste of chocolate on her tongue.

Many years later...

Harry Potter knocks at the door of his transfiguration teacher and his Head of House.
A stern voice calls: "Come in!"
He enters, the Gryffindor crest on his school uniform shimmers proudly in the golden light of her fireplace.
She has something on the table before her and Harry isn't quite sure what it is.

"Please, sit down."
She tells him and before he knows, she has already started talking about his transfiguration essay.

When she is finished, he stands up.
Curiosity wins finally and he asks: "What do you have there on the table, Professor?"

Minerva McGonagall smiles faintly and opens the little package:
"Ah, Harry, you know, I've always loved chocolate ."

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