"Man is man because he has no instincts, because everything he is and has become he has learned, acquired, from his culture [...] with the exception of the instinctoid reactions in infants to sudden withdrawals of support and to sudden loud noises, the human being is entirely instinctless." The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature
Tom Marvolo Riddle arrived into a cold snowy night on the 31st of December, 1926, conceived under the effects of a Love Potion and stripped of his ability to feel emotions. Born into a home of isolation and hatred, he grew up to be one of the most notorious villains the Wizarding World had ever lived to know, destined to spiral into insanity and eventually death.
Except maybe he wasn't.
The fall of 1928 Merope Gaunt visits Wool's Orphanage one last time and she leaves behind an arbitrary element before departing from the world: a young boy called Alexis Riddle. With a younger brother by his side, can Tom Riddle put aside his sociopathic tendencies in leeway of a newly found familial bond? Or will those very same predispositions send Tom down an even darker trail than previously anticipated?
Cowritten with the goddess known as @serpentink.
Warnings: Includes graphic violence, mentally disturbing images, psychological/emotional abuse, heterosexual/homosexual relationships.