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The Rise and Fall of the Dark Lord Voldemort
Transcript of The Rise and Fall of the Dark Lord Voldemort
by: Molly Wack
Born to a pure-blood mother and a Muggle father, Tom Riddle was conceived under a love potion, rendering him incapable of feeling regular, human emotions. He grew up in a poor London orphanage, where he both mentally and physically tortured his peers.
Albus Dumbledore visited the young Riddle in the orphanage, inviting him to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, but told him that bullying would not be tolerated.
Tom excelled at Hogwarts. He was very talented and very charming. He acquired quite a group of followers, although he felt no affection toward them. Tom became obsessed with discovering his family history. He murdered his father and grandparents when he was only 16.
"Personally, I'm inclined to think that she used a love potion. I am sure it would have seemed more romantic to her..." ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 202.
"He left her , never saw her again, and never troubled to discover what became of his son." ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 203.
" 'I can make things move without touching them. I can make animals do what I want them to do, without training them. I can make bad things happen to people who annoy me. I can make them hurt if I want to.' " ~Tom Riddle, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 254.
" 'At Hogwarts,' Dumbledore went on, 'we teach you not only to use magic, but to control it. You have - inadvertently, I am sure - been using your powers in a way that is neither taught nor tolerated at our school. You are not the first, nor will you be the last, to allow your magic to run away from you...' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 256.
" '...he showed his contempt for anything that tied him to other people, anything that made him ordinary. Even then, he wished to be different, seperate, notorious.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 259.
" 'I trust that you also noticed that Tom Riddle was already highly self-sufficient, secretive, and apparently, friendless?...He preferred to operate alone. The adult Voldemort is the same.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 259-260.
" 'As an unusually talented and very good-looking orphan, he naturally drew attention and sympathy from the staff almost from the moment of his arrival. He seemed polite, quiet and thirsty for knowledge. Nearly all were favourably impressed by him.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 337.
" 'Voldemort Stupefied his uncle, took his wand, and proceeded across the valley to "the big house over the way". There he murdered the Muggle man who had abandoned his witch mother, and, for good measure, his Muggle grandparents, thus obliterating the last of the unworthy Riddle line and revenging himself upon the father who never wanted him.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 343-344.
Tom was also very interested in ways to cheat death. He became fascinated with the idea of Horcruxes, objects in which a person conceals part of his or her soul. Even if one were to die, their soul would remain earthbound and undamaged. Only an act of evil can split a soul, only the act of murder. Riddle was not only interested in one Horcrux, he wanted seven, the most powerful magic number.
After Hogwarts, Riddle began working at Borgin and Burkes', a shop for dark and dangerous magical objects. He was sent to persuade people into giving up their most precious objects. He frequently visited an old witch named Hepzibah Smith. One day, Hepzibah showed him her most treasured objects, Helga Hufflepuff's cup and Salazar Slytherin's locket. A few days after Hepzibah showed Riddle her prized possessions, she was found dead and the cup and locket had disappeared.
"She hooked the cup back off Voldemort's long forefinger and restored it gently to its box, too intent upon settling it carefully back into position to notice the shadow that crossed Voldemort's face as the cup was taken away." ~Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 408.
" 'Are you all right, dear?'
'Oh yes,' said Voldemort quietly. 'Yes, I'm very well...'
'I thought - but a trick of the light, I suppose -' said Hepzibah, looking unnerved, and Harry guessed that she, too, had seen the momentary red gleam in Voldemort's eye. " ~Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 410.
" 'Voldemort had committed another murder; whether is was his first since he killed the Riddles, I do not know, but I think it was. This time, as will have seen, he killed not for revenge, but got gain. He wanted the two fabulous trophies that poor, besotted old woman showed him. Just as he had once robbed the other children at his orphanage, just as he had stolen his uncle Morfin's ring, so he ran off with Hepzibah's cup and locket.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 411,
" 'Well, you split your soul, you see,' said Slughorn, 'and hide part of it in an object outside the body. Then, even if one's body is attacked or destroyed, one cannot die, for part of the soul remains earthbound and undamaged. But, of course, existence in such a form...' " ~Horace Slughorn, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 464,
" 'By an act of evil - the supreme act of evil. By committing murder. Killing rips the soul apart. The wizard intent upon creating a Horcrux would use the damage to his advantage: he would encase the torn portion -' " ~Horace Slughorn, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 465.
As he gained followers and grew in infamy, Voldemort created six Horcruxes. While they could have been regular objects, Voldemort decided that his Horcruxes would be made from famous, powerful, and significant objects. He divided his soul and placed a piece in a diary, the Gaunt ring, Slytherin's locket, Hufflepuff's cup, Ravenclaw's diadem, and his snake Nagini.
"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord know not ... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies ..." ~Sybill Trelawney, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 741.
Voldemort hunted for the Potters and on the evening of Halloween of 1981, he found their house and murdered James and Lily. However, because Lily sacrificed her life to save Harry, Voldemort's killing curse bounce off Harry and destroyed the Dark Lord's mortal body. Because his soul was already so severed, another piece was accidentally encases in Harry. This was Voldemort's first major act of hubris. Despite being one of the most powerful wizards of his time, Voldemort overlooked the ancient power of love. It was Lily's love and sacrifice that protected Harry.
" 'The old argument,' he said softly. 'But nothing I have seen in the world as supported your famous pronouncements that love is more powerful than my kind of magic, Dumbledore.' " ~Voldemort, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, pg 415.
" 'While you can still call home the place where your mother's blood dwells, there you cannot e touched or harmed by Voldemort. He shed her blood, but it lives on in you and her sister. Her blood became your refuge.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, pg 737.
" 'Your mother died to save you. If there is one thing Voldemort cannot understand, it is love. He didn't realize that love as powerful as your mother's love for you leaves its own mark. Not a scar, no visible sign...to have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever. It in your very skin. Quirrell, full of hatred, greed, and ambition, sharing his soul with Voldemort, could not touch you for this very reason. It was agony to touch a person marked by something so good.' " ~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, pg 216.
After being torn from his body, Voldemort's soul wandered to forests of Albania, inhabiting the bodies of animals, including his snake Nagini. It was in Albania that Voldemort stumbled upon Professor Quirrell. Easily overpowered, the meek and timid Quirrell became Voldemort's servant. After failing to steal the Philosopher's Stone from the bank Gringotts, Voldemort decided to share Quirrell's body. He subsisted off of unicorn's blood to help him stay alive.
" 'He is with me wherever I go,' said Quirrell quietly. 'I met him when I traveled around the world. A foolish young man I was then, full of ridiculous ideas about good and evil. Lord Voldemort showed me how wrong I was. There is no good and evil, there is only power, and those too weak to seek it ... Since then, I have served him faithfully, although I have let him down any times. He has had to be hard on me,' Quirrell shivered suddenly. 'He does not forgive mistakes easily. When I failed to steal the Stone from Gringotts, he was most displeased. He punished me ... decided he would have to keep a closer watch on me ...' " ~Professor Quirrell, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, pg 211.
" 'That is because it is a monstrous thing, to slay a unicorn,' said Firenze. 'Only one who has nothing to lose, and everything to gain, would commit such a crime. The blood od a unicorn will keep you alive, even if you are an inch from death, but at a terible price. You have slain something pure and defenceless to save yourself and you will have but a half life, a cursed life, from the moment the blood touches your lips.' " ~Firenze the centaur, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, pg 188.
Quirrell made it through many defenses to reach the Philosopher's Stone. However, he could not figure out how to get it. When it magically appeared in Harry's pocket, Voldemort instructed Quirrell to take the stone and kill Harry. Due to Harry's mother's protection, Quirrell could not touch Harry with being burned. Dumbledore rescued Harry, killed Quirrell, and Voldemort was left only with his soul.
" 'See what I have become?' the face said. 'Mere shadow and vapour ... I have form only when I can share another's body ... but there always have been those willing to let me into their hearts and minds ... Unicorn blood has strengthened me, these past weeks ... You saw faithful Quirrell drinking it for me in the Forest ... and once I have the Elixir of Life, I will be able to create a body of my own ...' " ~Lord Voldemort, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, pg 213.
"Quirrell rolled off him, his face blistering too, and then Harry knew: Quirrell couldn't touch his bare skin, not without suffering terrible pain - his only chance was to keep hold of Quirrell, keep him in enough pain to stop him doing a curse." ~Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, pg 214.
Voldemort gained a corporeal body during Harry's fourth year at school. Harry was transported to a graveyard in Little Hangleton where Voldemort's father and grandparents were buried. Harry was forced to take part in a ceremony that revived Voldemort. Harry managed to escape the cemetery and return to Hogwarts, however only few believed him about Voldemort's return.
"The thin man stepped out of the cauldron, staring at Harry ... and Harry stared back into the face that had haunted his nightmares for three years. Whiter that a skull, with wide, livid scarlet eyes, and a nose that was as a snakes', with slits for nostrils ...
Lord Voldemort had risen again." ~Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, pg 558.
Harry spent his seventh year at Hogwarts searching for Voldemort's Horcruxes around England. The last Horcrux was Ravenclaw's lost diadem, which was in Hogwarts. Once Voldemort realized that Harry was systematically destroying his Horcruxes, Voldemort began a full-fledged assault on Hogwarts. However, all through the battle, Voldemort was betrayed by his own hubris.
Firstly, Snape, Voldemort's supposed number one Death Eater, was actually a double-agent. Ever since Voldemort murdered Lily Potter, Snape's childhood love, Snape had been informing Dumbledore about all of Voldemort's actions. Voldemort failed to realize that love was a powerful motivator, especially since Lily was a Muggle-born. However, Snape died fully on the side of good.
Secondly, when Harry walks into the Forbidden Forest willingly, giving up his life for his friends, Voldemort underestimates two things. Because Harry gave up his life without a fight, Voldemort did not kill Harry, only destroying the fragment of himself in the boy. Harry gave up his life for his friends, just as his mother gave up her life for him, so the same magical enchantment protects the students and teachers at Hogwarts.
" 'For him?' shouted Snape. 'Expecto patronum!'
From the tip of his wand nurst the silver doe: she landed on the office florr, bounded once across the office and soared of the the window. Dumbledore watched her fly away, and as her silvery glow faded he turned back to Snape, and his eyes were full of tears.
'After all this time?'
'Always,' said Snape. " ~Severus Snape and Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, pg 552.
Voldemort continued to underestimate the power of love. When he sends someone to check to see if Harry is dead, he sends Narcissa Malfoy. Obviously alive, she asks Harry whether Draco was still alive. When Harry responds yes, she declares to the Death Eaters and Voldemort that Harry Potter is truly dead.
" 'Is Draco alive? Is he in the castle?'
'Yes,' he breathed back.
'He is dead!' Narcissa Malfoy called to the watchers" ~Harry Potter and Narcissa Malfoy, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, pg 581.
A mother's love for her children once again was the downfall of Voldemort. When Bellatrix Lestrange, Voldemort's best lieutenant, attacked Ginny Weasley, Molly Weasley stepped up. She dueled Bellatrix and killed her, causing Voldemort to scream in anger.
" 'NOT MY DAUGHTER, YOU BITCH!'
Mrs. Weasley threw off her cloak as she ran, freeing her arms. Bellatrix spun on the spot, roaring with laughter at the sight of her new challenger.
'OUT OF MY WAY!' shouted Mrs. Weasley to the three girls, and with a swipe of her wand she began to duel." ~Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, pg 589.
Voldemort's last act of hubris came with his final duel with Harry. Although Voldemort stole the Elder Wand from Dumbledore grave, the wand was never his; he never defeated Dumbledore. Although Voldemort killed Snape to get ownership of the wand, the wand was never his; Snape never beat Dumbledore. The true owner of the wand was Harry, for he beat Draco, who had previously disarmed Dumbledore. Voldemort died because he underestimated the power of love and the power of the small.
"Tom Riddle hit the floor with a mundane finality, his body feeble and shrunken, the white hands empty, the snake-like face vacant and unknowing. Voldemort was dead, killed by his own rebounding curse, and Harry stood with two wands in his hand, staring down at his enemy's shell." ~Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, pg 596.
The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.