Legion of the Lost Day Part 2: The Wheels Are In Motion 2 – The Adventures of Peter Pettigrew
by Brandon Ford
Our friend Peter Pettigrew has been a busy little so and so. He was MIA duringOrder of the Phoenix and no one seems to know why or have noticed his absence (I’m talking about the book people, not you guys). We would naturally expect him to be right at Voldemort’s side in the Ministry of Magic. He should have been in the thick of it with the other Death Eaters and yet, he is absent. Where could he be? What could he have been doing? I submit for your entertainment and consideration: THE ADVENTURES OF PETER PETTIGREW!
WHY HE WAS GONE
There is no textual evidence whatsoever to give us any clues as to where he might be. In order to be good detectives, we must take what we know of Peter and what we know of Voldemort and what we know of J.K. Rowling, put it all together, and see what we have. The first thing we know about JKR is that THE WHEELS ARE CONSTANTLY IN MOTION! The fact that Peter was conspicuously absent from the proceedings of OotP lets us know that he was gone for a reason. Then we must take what we know of Peter Pettigrew. He is a coward who will only stand on the winning side. But as much as he is afraid to be on the losing team, or, worse, alone, it is nowhere near how afraid he is of Voldemort. Then we have to take what we know of Voldemort. Voldemort ain’t no dummy. Voldemort knows that Peter is a traitor and is only with him because he can’t go anywhere else. But he also knows that that little rat has his uses. He knows enough not to let Peter out of his sight for too long or else he could be using that miniscule brain of his and make bad things happen to Voldemort’s plan.
Taking all that in, what can we surmise? I’ll tell you. All the time during OotP while Voldemort was frantically trying to get the Prophecy, he was also working on a new plan or perhaps revitalizing an old one. And while all the Death Eaters were his foot soldiers/spies, Peter was working on something else. Then it hit me. Voldemort was so frantic, trying to get the Prophecy for months and months. Then he finds out the Prophecy was destroyed, and he… doesn’t really seem that upset. JKR describes Voldemort as speaking “softly” and “quietly.” There is no mention of rage or anger or general pissiness. He hears the news and basically says, “screw it” and whips out the Avada Kedavra. This is silly! Why, if finding out the Prophecy is so important so he can kill Harry, does Voldemort not really seem to care that the Prophecy was destroyed? What if… IT WAS ALL A DIVERSION?
I have always maintained that Voldemort was too smart to attempt to just bump Harry off without knowing the rest of the Prophecy. And yet, that is exactly what he attempts to do at the Ministry. That just seems so un-Voldemort like. The man’s an evil genius. He orchestrated the most cleverly orchestrated kidnap/trap in history in GoF, and he pulls some dumb move like this in OotP just never made sense. Unless… it was all a part of the plan. Think about it. We know that Voldemort can feign events in his mind so that Harry can see them and misinterpret them (a little thing called Sirius has been kidnapped). ‘Cause let’s face it: we all love Harry, but he is the master of misinterpretation. Harry’s scar burned upon telling Bellatrix that the Prophecy was destroyed. Harry interpreted that as Voldemort somehow reading Harry’s mind and being angry. When the truth was that Voldemort was there in the room. Remember that clever little Voldemort Alert System? It works three ways: 1) intense emotion, 2) whenever he’s near, and 3) ghastly possession and mind control. Harry, I think misinterpreted that alarm and because he did, we did.
I submit now that the reason ALL the Death Eaters were at the Ministry was to keep the Order AND the Ministry’s eyes off of the true threat elsewhere: Peter Pettigrew. Why in the world would some of the leading members of the Magical community (i.e. Lucius Malfoy) risk exposure by going to the Ministry? Do you think Lucius actually volunteered to go? That would risk his reputation. All of his political contacts (namely Fudge) would run for cover. The Malfoy family would be outcasts should they be exposed. Why would so many of these types of people risk their reputations and all the maneuvering they have done the past fourteen years just to get a dusty orb that, in the end, Voldemort seemed to care little about? The answer is two-fold. At the close of GoF, Voldemort seemingly let Lucius off with a warning for denying his relationship to Voldemort. But Voldemort never forgets. Voldemort went back and killed his father after not seeing the man for 18 years! So Voldemort holds a grudge. I believe that not only was Voldemort keeping everyone’s eyes off his real plan, but he was also orchestrating a punishment for Lucius and the unfaithful Death Eaters. Bellatrix was able to escape with Voldemort. But Lucius and most of the unfaithful Death Eaters were left to the authorities. (I realize there was an anti-Apparation ring around them but come on, IT’S FRICKIN’ VOLDEMORT!) Now of course, since Azkaban is about to be broken all the way open and become the new headquarters for Voldemort (I think), they will eventually be free. But I think Voldemort wanted to give them a small taste as to what it was like to be him the past 14 years: alone and trapped waiting to be saved but realizing that your “friend” isn’t coming to help you.
AND THE NEW PLAN IS…
In July when we have the new book, we will notice a lot of strange occurrences. When we add them all up, it will be the culmination of Voldemort’s plan, the seeds of which were planted in OotP. So what is Peter’s role in this new plan? It has to be something or somewhere where only Peter could get into. He can turn into a rat, which enables him to get into places that DEs can’t just blast their way into. Also, Peter Pettigrew is dead, or so almost the entire magical community thinks. So no one, save Dumbledore and Harry, would ever think to be looking for him. Intriguingly enough, in Snape’s secret missions (that are so secret I don’t think he even knows what he’s doing) wouldn’t Snape have noticed a little thing like a dead former nemesis walking around? Think about it. JKR was meticulous in her construction of PoA. Snape is knocked out before Peter is revealed and wakes up after Peter has fled. Dumbledore has not seen Peter Pettigrew. Besides the trio, the only people to see Peter alive were Sirius and Lupin. One of them is dead; the other is a werewolf and, of course, cannot be trusted. Bertha Jorkins, of course, saw him but she too is sort of dead. As for the Death Eaters, they were hooded and cloaked to protect anonymity. They’re not supposed to know who’s there (of course it doesn’t help when Voldemort calls them by their name). But they all saw Peter. Wouldn’t they have wanted to kill him? That was the whole point of him running away in the first place. The Death Eaters were supposed to be after him. I guess helping Voldemort come back fixed that one.
So what has he been up to? I think the safest bet is that he was charged with the task of gathering the army of creatures whom all fear. That seems like a task large enough to take up an entire book. But what I really think he’s been doing concentrates back to the days during Vold War I. Remember that Voldemort’s campaign for victory was stopped short. He was moving full steam ahead till he heard the Prophecy (at least part of it). I believe some of his plans were put on hold to deal with the imminent threat of his destruction. He became consumed by the necessity to remain immortal because to Voldemort, nothing is worse than death. Then he met up with little Harry Potter and found himself on the wrong end of his own Avada Kedavra. But those plans were still in the works. Voldemort is now back and can essentially pick up where he left off. That’s where Peter comes in. Peter can maneuver in ways big bad Voldemort can’t. He can set up and execute this plan without being noticed because the whole of the Ministry and the Order are so preoccupied with the return of the Death Eaters and Voldemort.
We’ll have more in this subject and more in Part 5: Vold War I. Until then, THE WHEELS ARE IN MOTION!