Mark Reads ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’: Chapter 14

In the fourteenth chapter of Deathly Hallows, it’s time for a camping trip with Ron, Hermione, and Harry. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Harry Potter.


Finally, Rowling gives us a chance to breathe.

That’s not a complaint, by the way. Every chapter since the wedding has been full of action, revelations, and plot twists, so it was nice to see Rowling sort of…stretch out for a second or two.

Our trio haven’t been captured, but they’ve ended up in a weird forest; Harry initially thinks it’s the Forbidden Forest, which I would have greatly enjoyed.

  • He met Hermione, also on her hands and knees, at Ron’s head. The moment his eyes fell upon Ron, all other concerns fled Harry’s mind, for blood drenched the whole of Ron’s left side and his face stood out, grayish-white, against the leaf-strewn earth. The Polyjuice Potion was wearing off now: Ron was halfway between Cattermole and himself in appearance, his hair turning redder and redder as his face drained of the little color it had left.

FUCK. Really? I mean, I appreciate that I’m reading a series of books where risks are real and people can suffer unbelievable consequences, but…not my Ron. What happened to him?

  • ”Splinched,” said Hermione, her fingers already busy at Ron’s sleeve, where the blood was wettest and darkest.

    Harry watched, horrified, as she tore open Ron’s shirt. He had always thought of Splinching as something comical, but this…His insides crawled unpleasantly as Hermione laid bare Ron’s upper arm, where a great chunk of flesh was missing, scooped cleanly away as though by knife.

PLEASE STOP THIS. Wait, am I begging an author to change a book that was written three years ago? Someone take this away from me.

Hermione explains to Harry how they ended up in the same forest where the Quidditch World Cup took place during Goblet of Fire. Turns out that Yaxley grabbed on to Hermione just before they Disapparated. Realizing that because of this, Yaxley got past the Fidelis Charm, she took them away from Grimmauld Place because it was no longer safe.

It’s kind of a sad thought; at least for the time being, it looks as though Harry will never be able to return to his godfather’s house. It’s another sign of loss and another instance of Harry and his friends being forced to move on. It makes me wonder…even if Harry defeats Voldemort, is he even going to want to return to number twelve, Grimmauld Place?

That is not a request for fanfiction, for the record.

Hermione…seriously guys? I want her to be my best friend. They make the decision to camp in the forest for a bit and we learn precisely how prepared she was for all of this. She pulls out the same tent they used during the Quidditch World Cup from her amazing purse/bag thingy. While Harry stays with Ron, she proceeds to enchant the space around them, to prevent wizards and Muggles from attacking them. Look, she is so goddamn awesome, guys, and I will keep repeating this because I am a broken record.

I didn’t expect them to be able open the locket or destroy the Horcrux just yet. Again, I still can’t figure out what they’re supposed to do with the locket, nor where any of the other Horcruxes are. I spent some time today thinking if there were any details left by Rowling before this chapter, and even in prior books, but I’m completely stumped.

  • Ron passed the Horcrux to Harry. After a moment or two, harry thought he knew what Ron meant. Was it his own blood pulsing through his veins that he could feel, or was it something beating inside the locket, like a tiny metal heart?

Yeah, no thanks. Do not want.

  • He had thought the he would feel elated if they managed to steal back the Horcrux, but somehow he did not; all he felt as he sat looking out at the darkness, of which his wand lit only a tiny part, was worry about what would happen next. It was as though he had been hurtling toward this point for weeks, months, maybe even years, but now he had come to an abrupt halt, run out of road.

    There were other Horcruxes out there somewhere, but he did not have the faintest idea where they could be. He did not even know what all of them were. Meanwhile he was at a loss to know how to destroy the only one that they had found, the Horcrux that currently lay against the bare flesh of his chest.

The idea that Harry is disappointed that he found the Horcrux is much more realistic than I really expected. The beauty of this is that Harry and his friends aren’t superheroes. They’re imperfect and the mistakes they’ve made along the way affect where they are now. I like that they don’t have the answers and that they don’t know what to do. I believe the story more this way.

That being said, I’m at a point where the visions that Harry has of Voldemort feel less believable than they should. I had a hard time thinking of how to describe what I felt when I read Harry’s newest vision of the “thief” that Voldemort is looking for. It felt like…Rowling was writing.

Let me elaborate. So much of this experience has been immersive, realistic, and detailed. There have been very few moments where I thought, “Rowling is doing this to set up something later. This is a plot device.”

This is one of those moments. And perhaps I’ll eat my words later, like I did with the S.P.E.W. plotline. Perhaps this moment is indeed very, very important, but I don’t know why just yet. But at this moment, this vision felt too convenient, too much like Rowling was laying information down for us to process. It’s rigid and it’s jarring, and I’m not the biggest fan of it.

On top of that…..ANOTHER MYSTERY. REALLY. Look, we’ve got Horcruxes to find and destroy and now we have to pay attention to a blond-haired thief? My poor brain can’t handle much more information, guys.