raebird ([personal profile] raebird) wrote2006-08-05 08:12 pm
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So, yesterday I finished rereading the whole Harry Potter series thus far. And I'm wholeheartedly standing by what I posted about HBP last year. And I also just had a small and very belated flash of insight about HBP.

So it's widely accepted that R.A.B., the taker of the locket horcrux, was Regulus Black, yes? Makes sense. One thing I didn't notice until this reread, though, was that after they had taken the locket in the cave, Dumbeldore said that one man could not have done that alone. So who was helping Regulus, and why haven't they ever mentioned it to anyone? We know it couldn't have been a fully-qualified witch or wizard because Dumbledore said that the little boat that took them across the lake would only allow one wizard, and that it was sensitive to the amount of magic that wizard possessed, which was why Harry, as a 16-year-old, could go in the boat with Dumbledore. So Regulus's helper would have to have been underage, or a Muggle, or a Squib. Still, what happened to them? Did Regulus make his helper drink the potion, then kill his helper? (How horrible!) Did the helper get out safely, only to be killed by Voldemort like Regulus was? (Did Voldemort actually kill Regulus, do we know, or might it have been the potion?) If the helper survived, why keep quiet about that whole horcrux hunting thing? And how is Harry going to find this person in the next book so he can find out it was Regulus and find the real horcrux locket that we can reasonably assume hasn't been destroyed yet?

Then I realized what I'm sure many have realized before me: Duh. No. His helper was Kreacher. House elf magic is different from wizards' magic, and Voldemort would underestimate house elves just like he underestimates youth, so Kreacher could have gone on the boat. Regulus would have ordered Kreacher to force him to drink all of the potion (who else would have been loyal enough, but still wouldn't have continued to hunt horcruxes after Regulus died?), and he would have ordered Kreacher not to tell anyone (or at least, none of the Death Eaters) what he was doing. And since Kreacher is Harry's now, there's sure to be an opportunity for Harry to make Kreacher tell him what he knows.

One unrelated thing I noticed on this reread that just makes me love JKR a lot is the way she writes the relationships between people and their pets. It's mostly all little touches, but they strike me as kind of unique in the fact that they aren't really necessary but are there anyway. In the earlier books, most of the little entertaining bits of detail are either ultimately clues to the overarching plot of the book or are in some way world-building for the whole HP universe. In PoA, there are also lots of pet moments that turn out to be plot clues. But then in the later books, there are these little moments of pet business (Crookshanks batting at some magical trick, hopping up on someone's lap, etc.) that have nothing to do with the overarching plot. They're just little moments. I love that. There's probably never going to be any plot reason for the existence of Pygmy Puffs. They're just cute. I love that, too.

And, you know, Fawkes is going to be important again, right? Right.

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