Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.

Broken Toys
By Silver Sailor Ganymede

All the toys in the orphanage were broken, but Tom didn't realise that for years. He hadn't known that the toys weren't supposed to be like that until some of the new arrivals had started complaining about it – the ones who had actually known their families at some point, unlike him. They were used to soft toys that smelled vaguely of their mother's perfume, trains with wheels that worked and dolls that didn't have limbs and eyes missing, that didn't have dirt on their dresses and tangles in their hair.

Tom had always thought that the toys were supposed to look like that – he had never seen anything else, and anyway, the dolls resembled the girls in the orphanage, who also always had dirt on their dresses and tangles in their hair. The toys, Tom mused, were as miserable as the children themselves, but that didn't matter. That was just how things were.

Tom told himself that it didn't matter whether the toys were broken or not, whether the children were miserable or not, whether the orphanage was unbearable or not. It didn't affect him because toys were for children (broken or not) and Tom Riddle had never been a child.