Shenanigans at Malfoy Manor.
At this point, I have indeed read the entirety of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.” It was much better than I expected, and I don’t regret reading the script.
One of the key points is the relationships that characters have with their parents…or don’t as the case may be. It’s a little hazy on who the “Cursed Child” is, but quite strong on the “power of friendship.” In order to make the kind of study in contrasts that the story is looking for, it needs to give us a child for Voldemort, and does so.
It’s very unclear when in the timeline of the novels that daughter could have been conceived, or for that matter, when Bellatrix was pregnant. after getting out of Azkaban prison, we have a pretty solid schedule of appearances for Bellatrix, and she never seems to be, well, pregnant.
As a true ubergeek…I took out the books, and did some research. That generated a plausible timeline, but based on very, very flimsy evidence. Let’s look.
1. In the book, Bellatrix Lestrange is not there when Snape kills Dumbledore on the tower (we are talking about Half Blood Prince, obviously)? Why wouldn’t Voldemort’s most dangerous lieutenant, and Draco’s aunt be there? Unless, of course, she was pregnant, and it was too risky.
2. At the beginning of Half Blood Prince, Bellatrix says something strange… “If I had sons, I would be glad to give them up to the service of the Dark Lord!” Notice how she said sons, not a son. That’s flimsy, flimsy stuff, but in the context of the conversation, the singular would have been more on point…unless she is alluding to something else.
3. In Deathly Hallows, it says more than once that Bellatrix talked to Voldemort “as a lover” and her death is the only time Voldemort is upset at really anyone’s death.
So…putting that together…the working theory here is that Bellatrix was pregnant at the beginning of Half Blood Prince. LeStrange is thinking of the future and says “son”s instead of son because she already has one on the way. Obviously is missing from the battle because she is off giving birth to Voldemort’s child, or just not in a condition to do battle at all. She changes how she speaks to Voldemort after Order of the Phoenix, being more conversational and equal, and the narration suggests even a more intimate relationship. That does leave enough time in the story for things to have happened, although there’s no direct evidence.
However…it’s also the single weirdest and creepiest thing in the play, and retroactively, the seven books. It was creepy to draw the two characters in a sort of Public Display of Affection, and the protagonist’s advice to Vacation Time Pony is very much on point.
Why are the protagonist and Vacation Time Pony taking tea with Voldemort and Bellatrix? How do I know? I only draw the strip, I didn’t really consider the backstory here.
Ultimately, the play was a solid enough read…and as the official English Teacher, I probably needed to get one of the most major events in modern publishing read fairly quickly. At the end of the day, I guess I had to take tea with Voldemort as well.