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A Frumious Bandersnatch

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Riddle took in a shaky breath, his lungs filling with oxygen. It tastes of minerals, nature. Crisp. Is this what it's always felt like? Air. Breathing. Natural, good, refreshing.  Breathe. Smooth, intoxicating. Oxygen. He could feel his lungs expand in his ribcage, knocking. Knocking. Knocking against his bone. It scraped, it ached-- itching to get out of his own flesh. His flesh and organs felt melted together with one, singular breath, filling his lungs like water in a fish tank. It felt liquid, almost cool and chilled his insides. He blinked, feeling his eyes adjust underneath his crimson painted lids. His eyes felt dry, but the appreciation he had for his movement was another story. He continued steadying his breath, focusing on how smooth and crisp the air felt in his lungs. Although it... doesn't feel natural. Do I always do this? When my eyes are closed, whilst I sleep? While I dream? While I blink, mind lost to wander? Is this what it's like? To be dead, yet my body alive as my mind drifts off into the unknown? How terrifying. Yet. It's distant... quiet... lonely... all mine, tightly locked in the deepest depths of the subconscious mind. No one but me can see these parts of my mind. My memories. My dreams.


"Did it work? Do you think he'll remember, Mozus? Who he really is?"


Grey eyes came into focus, blinding daylight surrounding the figure of a man shrouded in mystery. What a cozy little hovel this is. Although, it seems off. Wait a moment... everything is off. No... this memory isn't right. It's... fuzzy. Everything is a haze. This memory. How long ago was it, again? When this mess first started. Memories. Glancing back to the white-washed, chipped windowsill and back to the man. Funny, how his dark and gloom appearance perfectly contrasted against the homely white rocking chair. His shadowed eyes almost glowing with a dim, yellow light. Again he asks. What boring, nonsensical blather this is.

"What do you think? Night Raven College." 

Night Raven... ah. That place. Legend has it--


"No, no-- wait. This isn't the right memory. Further. Further backwards. Further. Deeper into his subconscious." 




"You'll never be the so-called 'Queen of Hearts' with a face like that. Chip up, Riddle!" A cat? Oh. A cat. Him. Chen'nya. An old friend with a Cheshire grin. What a cocky smile he's always had-- damned bastard. Bless him. "You're not going to get anywhere at all, infact, with such a grim, gloomy expression." Another voice. Trey, perhaps? No. No no, this one is blurry too. Who is that? I... know that voice.. but it doesn't belong in this memory, I don't think. Or does it? Damnit all! It feels... it feels like someone is in my head. They're all in my head. It feels like someone is watching me. Someone can hear my thoughts... see my memories--!


"No, we need to go further back. Further, deeper. Deeper! We're close... I can sense it. He's talking about the Queen. Hurry, Mozus! It's here somewhere!" 




A shriek ripped through the air, the small, lithe body of a red-headed boy squirming helplessly on the ground. Scarlet red spilled from his hand, covering his right eye. The red fluid was sticky, metallic and warm against his ivory skin. He shrieked yet again, his hand grasping for any pressure he could find against his open wounds as his lungs fill with oxygen like hot air balloons. "IT'LL BE OFF WITH YOUR FUCKING HEAD FOR THIS, TRAPPOLA!" The small boy roared, his voice taught with the sheer loudness of his pain and misery as he writhed in the grass, groaning in agony. Trey ran to his dorm leader's aid, his face pale at the sight of so much crimson blood. He--


"Wait, slow down! We're getting his memories mixed up... he's gaining consciousness. It's all fuzzy... We need to go back further!"


His throat ached and pulled, his heart seeming to be at his feet. His eyes burned and prickled, salty drops filling his eyes until the white-washed walls of the living room seemed to blur and haze-- but tears never came.  "Riddle... you have a deeper purpose. There is always a reason for everything I've done. All of it was for your own good... including this." His mother's soft, layered Bob perfectly framed her heart-shaped face, the scarlet contrasting against her ivory skin. Her eyebrows, sharp and thin, arched and pulled against her age-ridden forehead as her ruby red lips pursed in a frustrated emotion. 

Riddle's fist slammed into the ivory dining table, his cheeks burning with an agonizing ache that seemed to never cease. Silence passed between mother and son; albeit a few moments, it felt like eons. "What do you mean?! A purpose? A reason? For me?" Riddle's eyes moved to the small, black leather booklet-- wrapped like a present on Christmas day, with so much care and thought in how beautiful the gold lettering looked. The raven crest embedded itself into the cherlot colored wax within the silky, melted dot that read 'NIGHT RAVEN COLLEGE.' "This... it's come to this? Stowing me away in a far off school, so you never have to see me again?" Riddle's mother drew in a breath, her age creased eyes seeming to shut for a moment in thought. "You hate my friends, you hate how I've done in school; I've worked so hard, Mother, and all you seem to see is my wrongdoings. I want nothing more from you than your approval. Has anything you've ever done truly been for me...?" Riddle finished quietly, those grey eyes swimming in salty, wet and warm tears... but none seemed to fall. Mother finally looked up, her own charcoal eyes like burning embers, shrouded behind scarlet hair that perfectly framed her frustration, anger and exhaustion. 

"It was never about you in the first place, ungrateful child. It's about her." 



"Ah... we found it." 

"Found what?"

"The memory. The memory that started this mess; the boy kept it under lock and key this whole time."

"What are you talking about, Dire?"

"The memory... before he became the Queen."