“The stories we love the best, live in us forever.”
– Joanne Katherine Rowling –
Billions of children around the world learned to dream and believe in magic. They found solace in the lap of Hogsmeade, and a home much warmer than their own when the gates of Hogwarts welcomed them. I’m a member of this massive fan base, who have laughed over and over again when redheaded Weasley twins pulled their shenanigans off; cried when Dobby died; hated when Umbridge brought her autocratic system into the school; sobbed when Sirius was murdered and were petrified each time Snape made an entrance.
Rowling, a brilliant writer of her time skillfully crafted the single greatest story of the century and gifted it to all those who needed to know, “Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light”.
When I look back in time, I see a beautiful childhood wrapped in the amazing adventures of the boy who lived and his friends.
Having said that, Harry has never been my most favorite character, even though he’s the protagonist. See, this is what I appreciate the most about Rowling. She made sure every character had their own space, importance, and a value to add to the story. And she weaved and weaved, till the very last page. Harry is Harry because all the other characters allowed him to be that. They added their value, and made him the “Chosen one”.
The saga taught me way more than my school teachers instructing which chemical reacted the most vigorously with what. I wish we had some potions class to attend. I mean, why not? Just imagine, some fooling around with Gillyweed and Dragon blood would have been a gala time for us! Okay, maybe I’m getting carried away a little too much, but the point of this article is to remind you of the characters other than the trio, who taught us about life, death, and everything in between way more than the people around you.
1. Only the biggest challenges reveal our true-self. Can you be brave then, is the question.
One of my most beloved characters is the shy-awkward boy, the uncool little chap who made us question what bravery really doesn’t even mean – Neville Longbottom. Is it about warring with the enemies or standing up to your friends when they’re wrong? Is it about defying the rules or resisting the hate? Is it about bullying the weakest ones or guarding the castle gates in dire times?
Neville broke the quintessential form of bravery, which is usually portrayed in our books and movies. He didn’t let his fear absorb his potentials. And boy did he avenge his parents!
2. Celebrate who you are, unabashedly. And know that weird is just another word for beautiful.
She’s calm and smart. She can read your eyes. And she suspects the Nargles. She is Luna Lovegood. She did not let anybody who found her “a bit odd” get under her skin. By simply being who she was, Luna Lovegood has been a rebel. But, she has always been on the mellow side with not a single drop of aggression. Her politeness and true Ravenclaw personality are just enough to slay!
Luna believes in the existence of what you can’t see, you understand what I mean? The character is open to the idea that there are many uncertainties and unknown phenomena. And, the ones who truly have the horizon to welcome the enigma of life are the ones who experience the magic. Remember the winged horses, which nobody could see besides Harry and Luna?
And finally, who can forget her most celebrated lesson?
“Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end, if not always in the way we expect.”
3. It’s sad, only until the time you laugh about it.
Fred and George are not two separate characters I feel. They’re each other’s confidante, best friends, partners in crime, and brothers for life. One just cannot separate these two souls. But, in the end, they had to.
I remember weeping for hours when Fred died, leaving his mate alone in an unfunny world that knew nothing about having a laugh. We’ve all been there, haven’t we? The Weasley twins lit our moods up every now and then as we flipped through the pages and reminded us of our own classmates who managed mischief pretty well.
They taught us to laugh away the sorrows, and mock away the blisters. Most importantly, they taught us that life’s going to screw you. But, the real question is, would you moan in pain or rather squirt like a boss when it does screw you?
Light up some firecrackers, break a rule already! But, whatever you become, do not be boring.
4. The wonders love can do, hate cannot.
A mother of seven children, and a wife to a middle-class man with nothing much to lose and content with whatever the universe has offered on the dining table, Molly Weasley has been just like any other warm, loving mother. Even though her home has never been ruckus-free; even though she had too many mouths to cook for, the short lady with a huge heart welcomed Harry like her own son. She tried her best to be the mother Harry never had.
The Weasleys together gave Harry a home; a support system to fall back to. Had it been possible without the lady of the house? Of course, not! I’m not sure if Harry would have gathered the courage to face the noseless antagonist without the uncompromised love Molly drizzled on him.
5. It’s tough to overpower the monster inside you. Not impossible.
Sometimes, parental pressure can make a child lose the goodness inside him. The pressure put on a child to prove how worthy he can be for his family and its name can destroy a childhood that is meant to be innocent. And growing up with such a humongous amount of stress could make one execute bad decisions. Yes, I’m totally talking about Draco Malfoy.
Was he really a bad kid? I don’t think so. I think he grew up in a wealthy family owing its allegiance to the dark side. So, obviously, he took pride in the cruel attitude that the Malfoys collectively enjoyed.
But he was afraid too. He didn’t want to kill anybody, he was just a scared kid who hoped for praises and approvals from his father. Draco in the due course, however, did understand that he wasn’t the man he was portraying to be. He just wanted to hang out with his friends, show off his wealth and have a great time.
In the end, he was courageous enough to kill his own demons. And this is what makes Draco, one of the most relatable characters.
I’ve given you my top five characters besides the trio, and the celebrated ones. Which ones are yours?