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47 Days to Change (a translation) @snow_owl01
What is the meaning of this?

Chapter 36

NOTE: This is a translation of a Chinese HP Fanfiction by 墨玉绿

BETA: the brilliant and awesome AzulticSerpens


This chapter contain some suggestive and sexually explicit content. As per regulation, NO explicit content will be posted on ff-dot-net. The following is the censored vision of Chapter 36. The full vision is posted on AO3 (link in my profile), click at your own discretion.

September, 1941

Some of a Slytherin's favourite things were attending parties and various social functions. And, for a Slytherin entering his fourth year, such events practically became a responsibility. In pure-blood society, fourth-years were given an invitation to choose a future for himself — to choose the right kind of future— with the right kinds of friends and the right kind of pureblood family to serve.

Therefore, it was no wonder that Slytherins always threw the best parties, always so grandiose and exquisite, with the most expensive drinks and lively music and all the right kind of people.

In the dungeons, there were always pits and rooms set aside for these special events. Hidden behind thick velvety curtains and crystal stained glass windows, under the soft glow of glittering chandeliers, a vibrant and most expensive evening ball was under way.

Across the ball room, Slytherin boys and girls were clustering in small groups. It was easy to figure out everyone's alliance by their association. See, everyone followed at least one of the three most powerful families — the Blacks, the Malfoys or the Princes.

Tom swirled his wine glass, observing their interactions and clashes with mild interest.

See, Tom was a special case in Slytherin. He chose not to choose sides. He kept his alliance deliberately unclear, despite the best effort of all three families to pursue him. Although Abraxas had been trying to recruit him since his first day at Hogwarts, Tom never gave a clear indication either way, which frustrated the Malfoy heir to no end.

Tom looked up as an older boy approached him, wine glass in hand.

"Tom Riddle," the handsome boy introduced himself to the newcomer with a firm handshake. He raised his glass toward the other dark-haired boy, as wine swished around in the glass, red and richly dark like blood.

"Cygnus Black," the other boy answered and drained his own glass. "Ah, so I've heard...Your name precedes you, Tom."

Indeed, his name did precede him. Everyone knew the name of Tom Riddle, who was the most promising Slytherin of his year.

He was Hogwarts' best student. Handsome, mysterious, brilliant, courteous, refined, and — everyone agreed on this— he was truly, irresistibly, irrefutably flawless from head to toe.

Yet... as perfect as he was, he was only one individual, without a notable family name behind him; and thus, a free talent like Tom Riddle became highly sought after. A most prized associate, whose abilities would make him a great asset to any well-known pureblood family.

Abraxas Malfoy rested on a sofa, watching the boy converse and dance around the crowds of young nobility with great ease. Suddenly, he felt the pressure seeping through the boy's polite smiles. He could recall, just four years ago, how that unknown boy with his gloomy face and his muggle name began schooling as the mutt of Slytherin; how he was bullied and rejected by his peers the moment he had yanked off the sorting hat. Yet... in four short years — no... in even less time— he had grown into a leader of Slytherin, someone to be admired, someone that even the children of the three families chased after.

Once, Abraxas had truly wanted to recruit the boy into the Malfoy family's services. But now, after observing how easily the boy managed to command a room, Abraxas felt just a wee bit threatened.

Abraxas rubbed his temple, blue eyes narrowed and focused.

In end... who would become the servant, and whom the master?

He sighed. At least, he was right all along. From the day that he saw the boy through the window of the Hogwarts Express, he knew there was something special about Tom Riddle.

Young Mr. Tom Riddle...I must keep my eye on you.

Very politely, Tom bid adieu to his new friend, Cygnus Black. He loosed his tie as he walked away from the group of young heirs and heiresses.

Oh, he knew exactly what was on their minds. Schemes, power moves, clever little tricks... were nothing more than child's play to him.

Tom adjusted his robes. A beautiful and courteous smile remained on his face, dark eyes narrowing into crescents, which were enough to hide the greed and arrogance expanding within. Let them have their games— in the end, everything would belong to him! He was Slytherin's heir. One day, when the time was ripe, he would claim his birthright and his place on top as their king.

It was only a matter of time. First, he would start by reclaiming the chamber, which Salazar Slytherin had left for him.

"Tom...Tom, would you like to dance?" A nervous young girl interrupted his thoughts.

Tom turned toward her; instantly all the dark emotions disappeared from his eyes. "Ah, of course, Mademoiselle. May I have the honour of this dance?"

The tall youth took a step back and bowed toward her, his right hand crossing his chest and his left hand extending forward in an invitation. His smile was dazzling, his etiquette impeccable, and his form perfect.

No doubt Harry would be very surprised to see the confidence and fluidity in the boy's movements. No one had even taught him how to dance.

The band played smooth and slow jazz music as couples swayed around the dance floor in elegant unity.

Under the bright lights of the ball room, the youth carried himself like the star of the show, twirling his stunned partner about with both the proficiency of an athlete and the gentleness of a lover. His black, tailored dress robe fitted him well, showing off his tall and lean figure. Handsome, elegant, and hopelessly charming, when Tom Riddle wanted to impress someone, he never failed. When his pure, affectionate, dark eyes focused on you, he could always make you feel like the world faded away until only you and he remained, intimate, true, and all alone together in spite of the noisy ball room.

He was the rare sort of man that no woman could refuse.

"It was my pleasure to dance with such a beauty," he would say, eyes twinkling mischievously. False compliments came flowing from his lips like sweet honey.

By the time Tom sat down next to Abraxas, he had already danced with three different girls.

"Well, well...Someone sure is popular," Abraxas teased.

Tom shrugged. He loosened his tie and tossed it aside. Then, he drained a cold drink in one gulp and leaned back against the soft sofa.

"Wait 'till you get a true taste of the pleasures of a girl's body— soft breasts, slim waist, delicate thighs—" Abraxas looked up at the ceiling, grinning stupidly as if reliving some of his more... pleasurable experiences.

Tom rolled his eyes. Oh, he had heard plenty about the Malfoy heir and his colourful habits.

After seeing Tom had no interest in the topic, Abraxas turned away and pursed his lips in boredom.

Suddenly, he sat up and waved at a nervous boy cowering in a corner.

"Over here, Ovi!" He called over the reluctant boy.

Ovidius Parkinson never liked parties. He tended to avoid them if he could and, normally, no one ever missed him, because he was utterly unimportant inside Slytherin, nothing more than an insignificant member of a vassal house of the Malfoys.

Tom watched Ovidius' approaching steps. He froze, dark eyes seized by the boy's form.

Ovidius wasn't a particularly attractive boy. At most, his features could be described as soft and delicate, yet, from afar, there was something uniquely familiar about him. He had a scrawny figure and a head full of messy dark hair, jet-black and untamed like a bird's nest.

"Hello, Tom," Ovidius greeted Tom weakly. The boy's face was unhealthily pale.

"Come here," Abraxas leaned back. He spread his arms on the back of the sofa and nodded at Ovidius, giving him a frisky but demanding look.

All colours drained from Ovidius' face. Although he was only one year younger than the Malfoy heir, he was also rather scared of him.

"But... but... Tom is still... here," the boy protested feebly.

Tom was puzzled, but he had no intention of offering them privacy either.

Abraxas gave the boy a warning look, which made Ovidius' lips tremble terribly. The boy looked determinedly away from Tom and then climbed on Abraxas' lap.

"Good boy," Abraxas tagged the boy's head back roughly and sucked on his lips. Then, while still holding Ovidius tightly against his chest, the blonde turned and explained to Tom. "His father gave him to me over the summer... as a gift of good-will, you see."

Tom peered at them curiously. His eyes narrowed. Something about the scene in front of him made the blood ran hot and hungry inside his veins. Suddenly, a rather pleased realization jumped into his head — so two men could... do these kinds of things?

The new idea was making Tom's heart pound fast. His throat felt dry. He licked his lips.

"I thought... you like soft and slender girls?" Tom shot Abraxas a look, his voice flat and nonchalant.

"Yes, but... soft and slender boys are fun too," Abraxas shrugged. He pulled Ovidius closer, and ran his fingers slowly through the boy's messy black curls, in a teasing and suggestive manner.

And, for some reason, that particular action annoyed Tom greatly. For a moment, the boy just sat there, staring at Abraxas' fingers weaving in and out of the familiar, nest-like hair.

Abraxas tugged on Ovidius' hair until the boy's head tilted back, exposing pale, vulnerable throat. Although he wasn't exactly beautiful, youthfulness was a gift that could conceal all blemishes. Sweat dripped down the boy's throat, gliding on pale skin, over protruding Adam's apple and down the hollows of his clavicular line. His breathing was short and heavy due to fear and embarrassment, but it also made the lines of his throat quiver uncontrollably. Tom stared. The sight was oddly... alluring.

"I think..." Tom interrupted suddenly. His eyes flashed, dark and vicious like a hungry wolf, trapping the boy in Abraxas' arms. "Do you mind... giving him to me?"

His request seemed to surprise Abraxas. The blonde turned around and raised an eyebrow as he silently appraised Tom. Then, Abraxas smirked.

"Oh?... And here I thought you were uninterested in sex all together... but obviously I was mistaken... Been barking up the wrong tree, perhaps?"

Of course, Abraxas, who had every intention of recruiting the boy, wouldn't refuse such a simple request. The blonde grinned openly; then he pushed Ovidius off his lap and toward Tom.

Ovidius followed Tom back to the dormitory, although he had only left his room fifteen minutes ago.

"Tom... Thank you for helping me," Ovidius stood by Tom's bed, apologizing profusely. "I'm really, really sorry that I spied on you for Malfoy... Really, I am—"

Tom turned around. He had already removed his dress-robe and was in the middle of unbuttoning his shirt. He loosened a collar, which revealed the pale and strong chest underneath.

The boy gave a mocking glance to his roommate. "Are you a Gryffindor, hmm?...By now, you ought to know why I helped you."

Although they were both only fourteen, Tom, who had already grown to 1.7 meters tall, hovered a head above Ovidius.

Suddenly, without any warning, Tom leaned forward and crushed their lips together. The boy's movement was clumsy, with no tenderness to speak of, as he bit down hard on the other's lips... It felt less like a kiss and more like the angry bite of an animal.

He wasn't trying to be gentle or loving as he forced his tongue past the other boy's teeth, as he tried to attack the other's mouth like Malfoy had done. It was a deep kiss... rude and raw and biting, but without any pleasure or thrill.

Before Ovidius could react, Tom hastily pushed him away.

Tom frowned. He wiped his mouth dry with his thumb. He did not like the slippery feeling of the other boy's saliva against his lips.

It felt... off. Like something was missing.

Tom considered the pale, tearful boy in front of him. He gave an unsatisfied tsk, then turned away.

This one was not good enough. Not strong enough. Not obstinate enough. Not warm enough.

Boring... How disappointing...

Now utterly disinterested, the beautiful youth turned around and left the room.

His mind was filling up with strange pleasure and pulsing heat.

He sunk into dreamy drowsiness, then slowly he began to see— a body, naked and perfect and breathtakingly beautiful, stretched beneath him.

Ivory skin, glowing with mysterious allure that made his stomach burn hot; the curve of a back; a shoulder... The youth couldn't help but to reach out to stroke the soft, firm skin. As he pressed down eagerly, a low and muffled moan escaped from the body beneath. It was a sound unlike any other. Tempting. Husky. Subdued. Not like the purposefully seductive noises of Abraxas' girlfriends. It was low and rumbling, like a surprised gasp of pain, like a suppressed moan of a creature who had suffered long and hard.

The voice made his blood boil with want.

As Tom moved, a strange heat rose up and swallowed him. A body quivered in his arms.

"Tom..." the voice moaned. The voice was hoarse and husky. And definitely not one made by a pubescent boy.

Before Tom could say anything, he felt his body moving on its own. He felt his lips pressing down on the nape of a neck, his teeth biting on soft skin, sucking and gnawing away, like a vampire feasting on its prey. Then, he heard his own voice calling out desperately—

"Harry, Harry, Harry..."

Tom startled awake. The images in front of him dissipated into white clouds, then into the ceiling of his dormitory.

It was all a dream.

Tom sat up. He reached down to his boxers and found it soiled.

The youth inspected the milky substance sticking onto his palm. Suddenly, he felt his heart pounding painfully as his eyes turned dark and dangerous.

What was the meaning of this?

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