Ginny sighed, lying on her stomach on her faded quilt as she flicked through her tattered schoolbooks. Every single one of them was second hand, some even older than that. Her 'new' potions book was covered in grotesque stains and the cover had already fallen off her charms book.
She wondered what people would think when she turned up at Hogwarts in her second hand robes – the last Weasley, the only girl with six older brothers overshadowing her.
She was trying to repair the broken binding on her transfiguration book with spellotape when a small, black book fell out and on to the floor. Curious, she picked it up. It was a diary of some sort, though the person it must have belonged to previously had obviously never written in it.
Pulling out the fraying quill Percy had given her, she tested it on a blank page of the diary in a huge scribble, splattering the page with droplets. The quill bent under her fingers and she groaned under her breath – it was the only one she had, and was supposed to last her all year.
Leaving the diary open on her pillow, she clambered to her feet and crossed her tiny room to put the quill on her desk. As she turned back to the bed she noticed that the ink on the diary had gone.
Confused, she flicked forward, and then back a few pages, wondering if the draft from the gap in her window frame had blown the pages over, but the scribble she had drawn was no where to be found.
Grabbing her quill again, she carefully blotted a single drop of ink on to one of the pages, watching as it seemed to get soaked into the paper and vanish.
Intrigued by the strange diary, she drew a smiley face in the middle of the page, wanting to watch as it vanished.
After a moment it too sunk in the page, and the word Hello appeared in neat, slanted writing.
Excited, she wrote Hello back.
My name is Tom Riddle, who are you?
I'm Ginny Weasley,
Pleasure to meet you, Ginny. Tom wrote. How did you come by my diary?
I found it in one of my school books.
So you are at Hogwarts?
No, not yet. I'm starting my first year in a few days. Ginny hesitated, and then wrote, I'm quite nervous actually. I have six older brothers who have already been, so I'm the last to go – I guess you could say I have a lot to live up to.
Don't worry, Ginny. My time at Hogwarts was the best of my life.
There is something else too, she wrote – after all, who could the diary tell? And it would be a relief to confide in someone. There's this boy who will be there too, and he is my brothers best friend.
Isn't there always a boy? Tom wrote, and Ginny got the impression that he was amused.
The problem is, he doesn't seem to know I exist … she wrote sadly.
And why is that? You seem like a bright enough girl.
He's really special though. Everyone loves him because he made You Know Who disappear.
The page of the diary remained blank for a long moment. Tom?
This boy defeated the Dark Lord? Tom asked eventually.
Yes – surely you've heard of Harry Potter?"
No Ginny, I haven't, Tom wrote. Will you tell me about him please?