'An Idle Mind Is The Devil's Playground'

By: Night Flame Miko

Contributed to by: Chocolate coated Blue

An: My God. It's been almost a year, and I am so sorry. This is my final year before going onto uni and literally it has been chaos. I finished my exams a little while ago, but then went on for a short vacation at the beach. It was awesome, but I've left you hanging for so long and finally inspiration *cough* procrastination *cough* has hit enough for me to retake up the story. I hope the wait has been worth it, and thanks you to all those who have urged me to continue, without your support who knows what might've happened?

Special Thanks To:Corpium, this wonderful person actually wrote what they thought would be fun to happen next, and brilliantly they managed to get my muse going once again. With Corpium's permission I have used parts of what they have written within this chapter. As a bit of fun I have added the rest of what Corium wrote onto the end of this chappy as a sort of omake. Enjoy everyone. :D

Warning: This is going to be a slash. As in boy x boy.

Disclaimer: We don't own anything.

"His ghost…is the Dark Lord."

Harry's breath caught in his throat before he let it out in a threat only the
Dark Lord could hear, "I am going to kill him."

Tom cocked an eyebrow curiously, smirking slightly, "Are you really?" The Dark Lord asked; following after Harry as said teenager stormed off in righteous fury, seemingly interested as to what extent he had managed to corrupt the Savior.

Harry who had been fuming to himself, striding down the corridor and ready to do damage...control, paused at not only the seemingly innocuous question but also at the apparently not panicking Dark Lord. Thinking about it Harry grimaced slightly, "Actually I think I'll leave that up to you. You're into that whole, 'kill people for the smallest infractions possible', thing aren't you?"

Tom stopped beside him and sighed, apparently mock-disappointed at the predictable answer,

"Then I suppose this would be the time to mention that I ordered Severus to reveal the information."

Blinking Harry paused as that information processed before turning on said , crossing his arms and tapping a foot expectantly he raised an eyebrow, waiting for an explanation as to why he shouldn't be violently angry at this piece of news. Tom opened his mouth as he prepared to explain before he paused, struck by the fact that he was apparently willing to follow the orders, be they verbal or not, of some teenager. Scowling he prepared to snap at Harry, a sarcastically derogatory comment on the tip of his tongue only to be paused once again at the look that Harry was giving him. It wasn't a harsh look, rather big green eyes stared behind too large glasses and Tom felt his own anger start to drift away. Realising what Harry was doing he muttered a half-hearted 'Brat' before beginning his explanation.

"It is inevitable that Dumbledore will find out who your 'ghost' is; there are simply too many variables for such an outcome to not occur. Therefore by having Severus reveal the information on our own terms not only will his position be strengthened but you will be able to control the situation, rather than being caught off guard." Tom shrugged slightly, turning his attention to an apparently quite interesting suit of armour.

Various expletives crossed Harry's mind. What Tom said was true, and although he was pissed at being left out of the loop, he also realised that he needed to act, and soon. Turning on his heel Harry floated towards his body, formulating and discarding explanations. The Dark Lord followed silently, lost in his own thoughts.

"Headmaster," Harry spoke softly, a childish lilt in his voice. He sat across
from the twinkling-eyed Dumbledore; Voldemort standing casually to the side,
observing. "What is it you wished to see me about?" the teen asked quietly.

"I apologise for pulling you from your classes, my boy. But something of a rather...delicate nature has recently come to my attention."

Harry inwardly grimaced. As soon as he forcefully woke himself up he had headed towards the Headmasters office, deciding that getting excuses in earlier would earn some brownie points. Only Snape had intercepted him on his way there, escorting him to Dumbledore who was twinkling far too much to be healthy.

"I'm sorry to be the one to tell you this, my dear boy. But Elder Samot, your ghost friend, is in fact Tom Riddle."

Harry widened his eyes and reared back in well feigned shock before glancing to the opposite corner of the room from Tom, looking at the empty space accusingly before turning his attention once more to Dumbledore. "But it can't be! He doesn't look anything like ol' Snake-Face! And he hasn't treated me bad or anything!" He emphasised everything with dramatic hand gestures and pleading looks at both Dumbledore and the empty space, ignoring the smirking Dark Lord off to the other side.

Dumbledore sighed sadly, seemingly buying Harry's completely ignorant act. Harry didn't know whether to be pleased or insulted that the Headmaster truly thought he was such an idiot as to not recognise his 'arch-enemy' even when apparently in disguise. "I'm sorry my boy, but it's true. Now I need to know, have you revealed anything to Tom that could be of a sensitive nature? And is there a way for you to stop him from appearing to you?"

But Harry was ignoring Dumbledore in favour of the empty space. Standing so abruptly that the chair he was on rocked backwards he stalked forwards, his face a mask of fury. Pointing at the area that would be a chest if Tom was actually in it, Harry released his magic enough that objects started rattling on their shelves and the office window's glass started to hum ominously. "I can't believe you. I actually trusted you! You were my friend! I told you things! You saw stuff no one else has seen! No! You know how the Dursley's treated me, and you still have the gall to mock me about it? Shut up! You're lying to me, I know you are!" Covering his ears with his hands Harry hunched over, as if trying to block out whatever was being said to him, mumbling 'liar, liar, liar' under his breath and hiding his smirk from Dumbledore with his forearm. Tom was actually chuckling to himself as he watched Harry perform. Finally Harry reared back, looking as if he had been slapped before he pointed at the door, glaring at the empty space, his face a rictus of fury. "Get out! I never want to see you again! Get out, get out, get out!" He stared at the empty space for a second before eventually lowering his arm and wiping at his eyes as if trying to hide tears. Facing away from Dumbledore he hoped the Old Coot mistook his shaking shoulders for crying.

There was movement behind him and then an old hand was placed on his shoulder; Harry had to stop himself from flinching away. Looking up into the carefully sad face of his Headmaster Harry could feel water appearing in his eyes from the effort it took to hold back his laughter, he really hoped it wasn't obvious that that was the reason he was crying, otherwise everything would be ruined.

Apparently it wasn't because Dumbledore squeezed his shoulder and let out a grandfatherly sigh, "My dear boy, I am so sorry. Voldemort has always been a very charismatic man, it is why he gains such followers in the first place. I have no doubt that he could trick even me into believing him a friend if given the opportunity."

Harry stoicly ignored the snort from said Dark Lord and instead nodded slightly, looking up at Dumbledore with wide and oh-so-innocent eyes. Dumbledore squeezed his shoulder one more time before moving back to his desk, re-arranging a few items on its surface. " Perhaps you should take today off, my boy. You have had quite a shock."

Harry nodded and pretended to sniffle. "Thank you Headmaster. I'll just...be going now."

Harry managed to keep a straight face almost all the way back to Gryffindor Tower before finally he couldn't take it anymore and collapsing; he laughed until it hurt.

He didn't notice Tom Riddle, Lord Voldemort and his recently acknowledged friend watching with a peculiar expression on his face and an undercurrent of emotions that would have confused the most emotionally adept person.

An: Finally! I just wanted to get this one scene over with. Don't worry I will update soon, though I am going on vacation at some point, so there will be delays. I am not a regular updater, and for that I'm sorry, but I will get them out as soon as I have the time.

Here is what Corpium wrote, and once again thank you so much! :

"His ghost…is the Dark Lord."

Harry's breath caught in his throat before he let it out in a threat only the
Dark Lord could hear, "I am going to kill him."

Crap, Harry thought. He needed a plan, and he needed one now. The fun and
games were over -for the moment. He would not lose this -this whatever he had
with Voldemort- because of Dumbledore. The Headmaster wouldn't take anything
else away from him.

The boy floated towards his body, formulating and discarding plans. The Dark
Lord followed silently.

"Headmaster," Harry spoke softly, a childish lilt in his voice. He sat across
from the twinkling-eyed Dumbledore; Voldemort stood casually to the side,
observing. "I need to talk to you about something," the teen said quietly.

"I'm pleased to hear that, my boy. What is it you wish to tell me?"

"This summer, I... I didn't know what to do. I was so lonely and angry, and
after Sirius... Well, I'll be honest. I was devastated. I felt like, like I
had to -to do something, anything! Something to avenge Sirius's death." Harry
looked down, his voice falling nearly to a whisper. "I let my anger control
me. I found a way to shield my mind from Voldemort... and I found a way to see
some of Voldemort's memories through his Occlumency shields." Harry chuckled
inwardly at the hopeful gleam in Dumbledore's eyes. "Of course," Harry
continued, self-deprecation staining his voice, "It didn't last long.
Voldemort found out soon, and boy, did that hurt! But anyway, for some reason,
I just got angrier at Snape. I blamed him for Sirius's death, for not actually
teaching me Occlumency, for -for everything... It's not like I had anything
else to think about, what with not being able to talk to my friends and all,"
he added pointedly.

"But," he continued. "The deal with my friends this summer isn't the point.
I'm talking too much, so I'll cut it short. In my brief adventures through
Voldemort's mind, I found some memories pertaining to Snape, and with how
angry I became this summer, I couldn't help trying to scare him this school
year," Harry looked down solemnly, grateful for the powerful Occlumency
shields Voldemort was providing. If Dumbledore knew Harry was cackling inside,
this little spiel of Harry's could have turned into a disaster.

The teen continued hesitantly, "I guess I succeeded," he murmured. "I knew
that Voldemort was one of the few things that scared Snape, so I used the
memories I'd discovered in the summer, and... and I made Snape think Voldemort
was with me yesterday... I really did scare him, and now... I don't know how
I could have acted that way. I -Snape's been through so much. He only ever
tried to protect me, and I just -I threw it in his face." Harry looked down
again as he fiddled with his hands, ignoring the twitching Dark Lord's snort.
The teen continued, "I don't know what to do! How can I possibly make up
for... for this?" He trailed off, looking at Dumbledore woefully.

The twinkle in the Headmaster's eyes seemed to encompass his entire pupils. It
was rather disturbing. "Perhaps, if you let me see the memories of what

"No!" Harry nearly shouted, his whole body tensing. "No," he said as he sagged
back into the chair. "I've forgiven Snape for his methods in teaching me
Occlumency, but that doesn't change what happened," he said gravely. "Loathing
Snape as I did, I still trusted him, but... He. Raped. My. Mind. Over and
over again. The pain, each time, it was worse than the Cruciatus curse," he

Dumbledore looked at him searchingly, so Harry continued, "I trust you,
Headmaster Dumbledore, but my mind... I just can't... I need some more

The Headmaster looked at the Boy-Who-Lived sadly. "I understand, my boy, and I
thank you for that trust. Now, perhaps you'd like to talk to your friends? I
can tell that keeping you from them this summer was a mistake."

"Yeah," Harry agreed quietly, trying to ignore the stab of anger from
Voldemort whenever the Headmaster said "my boy".

"As for Severus," Dumbledore began, "I will be having a discussion with him
today. Perhaps tomorrow you can confide in him what you told me."

"Yeah," said Harry as he stood up. "Thank you, Headmaster. I really appreciate
it. I'm sorry for disappointing you."

"It's not a problem, my boy. I'm glad you told me."

Harry walked out the door, gracing Dumbledore with a tentative smile. Just as
the door shut behind him, that smile turned to a vicious smirk.

The smirk soon died when he faced the Dark Lord. Curiosity and something akin
to hunger adorned Tom Riddle's rather handsome face, and the emotions coming
from the man made something stir within Harry. The teen gulped and hurried
quickly down the stone staircase.

An: So thank you, to Corpium and all my other reviewers. I hope you aren't to disappointed with this :P

-night flame miko