Ron's Future

This rant is one focusing on Ron, analyzing clues placed throughout the first 5 books that hint at his future role in the last 2 books of the series, including ones pointing towards his possible death. For some reason, not many seem to think that Ron will play a significant role in the last books of the series- I've seen everyone from Hermione to Penelope Clearwater being listed as candidates for important characters, but very few such lists include Ron. Why is this? Ron is Harry's best friend, and he's thus a major and prominent character, even in the 5th book, when his role felt almost dimished in some ways. There's no reason not to think that Ron will play an important role in his final years at Hogwarts... and he could quite possibly never live to see the end of his seventh year. THIS RANT CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR ORDER OF THE PHOENIX, SO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.

1. The vision in the Mirror of Erised becoming at least partially true
Ron's biggest desire, at least in the first book when he gazed into the Mirror of Erised, was to stand out among his brothers, the best of all of them. He saw himself as Head Boy, holding the Quidditch Cup, and being Quidditch Captain as well. This is starting to become at least partially true as far as the 5th book is concerned. He is made a prefect, which is the first step to becoming Head Boy/Girl, though not a requirement. Even though Ron openly hates the responsibility assigned to him as a prefect, he could very well end up being elected Head Boy. We know that Harry probably won't make the cut because Dumbledore thinks he (Harry) has enough responsibility already. We don't know much about any of the other boys in Ron's year from all four Houses except for Malfoy and his cronies... but could you honestly see Malfoy becoming Head Boy? Yes, he WAS made a prefect, but let's face it- he was probably the only halfway decent choice, given that we only know two other Slytherin boys in the year, Crabbe and Goyle, and both are far from prefect material. Malfoy definitely breaks rules too much to be considered Head Boy material. None of the Gryffindor boys seem to be qualified either, except perhaps Neville.
As far as the Quidditch desires, Ron was made Keeper of Gryffindor's Quidditch team in the 5th book. Admittedly, he wasn't very good at first, but by the last match, he'd gotten over his nervousness enough to help Gryffindor win the Quidditch Cup, so that part of the vision of his desires had been fulfilled. The only part of this vision that I feel is highly unlikely to come true is the Captain part- Ron hasn't been playing long enough to be elected Captain of the team, and Harry is likely to be elected Captain anyway.

2. Death Clue #1: Ron's Willingness To Sacrifice Himself.
Ron proved on two separate but major occasions that he's willing to sacrifice his life to save Harry and Hermione. Near the end of the first book, Harry was prepared to go through the trapdoor himself- but Ron then intervened and offered for himself and Hermione to go along with Harry. Later on, in the chess game, Ron let himself be taken. He knew it was the only way for them to go on, and he let himself be taken knowing he could have died at the hands of the violent chess piece. Later on near the end of the third book when Ron was chasing Scabbers, he fell down near the Whomping Willow, then when he got up, he pushed Harry out of Sirius/Padfoot's way and got dragged down under the tree instead. Then when Harry and Hermione came after him, Ron endured the pain of standing up on his broken leg and told Sirius he'd have to kill all three of them if he wanted to get to Harry. Ron then flung himself on Sirius, who was armed with a wand whereas the kids had nothing. So Ron would certainly willingly give his life at some point if it were to save Harry and/or Hermione's life.

3. Death Clue #2: The Fight And The Second Task.
In the fourth book, Ron and Harry had their first major quarrel- Ron's jealously overwhelmed him, and he almost entirely stopped speaking to Harry for a month. Harry was utterly miserable without Ron's companionship, because he was getting a taste of what life was like without Ron. Could this, perhaps, be foreshadowing of a REAL life without Ron? How Ron felt during the fight and afterwards was barely touched upon, but when the two made up, Ron did show some remorse for the way he'd acted. Later on, the second task of the Triwizard Tournament arrived, and the object of it was for each champion to rescue the thing he or she would miss the most if it were gone. And who would Harry miss the most? Ron!

4. Death Clue #3: A Table Of 13.
This clue was formulated from this page at MuggleNet, which details clues of Sirius' death. Think back to Prisoner of Azkaban, specifically Christmas dinner, when Professor Trelawney arrives, making them a table of 13. When she says that when 13 dine together the first to rise will be the first to die, we think she's spewing her usual bollocks. However, later on in OoTP, the first night at Grimmauld Place, a table of 13 sits down to dine and Sirius is the first to rise (when he and Mrs. Weasley are arguing), and he's obviously the first out of the group to die. Flash back to PoA at Christmas dinner. Harry and Ron apparently rise together from the table of 13. It's never specifically stated which of them actually got up first, but since we know Harry can't die at least until the end of the 7th book since only Voldy can kill him, this should mean that Ron will be the one who dies.

5. Death Clue #4: Mrs. Weasley's Boggart.
This is a rather feeble death clue, but I believe there's significance behind the fact that Ron was the first one that we, the readers, saw dead when Mrs. Weasley was fighting the boggart in OoTP. Indeed, the vision was so convincing that Harry himself thought for a second that Ron was really dead before remembering that he was safe back downstairs. Like the fact that Ron was the thing that Harry would miss the most back in book 4, the fact that Harry thought for a brief second that Ron was dead could be foreshadowing of Ron's death.

6. Death Clue #5: The Imperius Curse and Peter Pettigrew.
In Goblet of Fire, Fake Mad-Eye Moody puts the Imperius Curse on each of the students in turn. Harry is able to throw it off, but interestingly enough, Ron has lots of trouble throwing it off- indeed, more trouble than any other student, as far as we know. Remember, Goddess J.K. very rarely mentions these sorts of facts for no good reason. Recall from OoTP that Voldemort learned that Harry would go to any lengths to save Sirius from his possessing Harry. This can't have been the only thing about the people Harry cares about that Voldy learned- he most definitely knows about Ron and Hermione, and especially Harry's closeness to Ron and the rest of the Weasleys. Recall now that Ron was the first one Harry saw every time he "awoke" from having one of his more powerful visions or surges of Voldy's emotions, so it would be very simple to deduce Harry's closeness to Ron- and now that Sirius is gone, Harry is likely to become more and more protective of his friends, since they are some of the few people he has left to turn to. Recall also that Peter Pettigrew spent 12 years in the Weasley household and thus knows every in and out of it. Voldy could next set his sights on using Ron to lure Harry to him, so it's not impossible for a Death Eater or even Voldy himself to sneak into the Burrow some dark night, put Ron under the Imperius Curse, and use him to manipulate Harry into doing something stupid. Since Ron has trouble resisting the Curse, he obviously can't fight it enough to give Harry some sort of warning or to even go temporarily mad, like what happened with Mr. Crouch, to indicate he's being controlled. Once Ron's usefulness to Voldy has run out, unless the others find a way to save him, Voldy ain't exactly going to let him go free so it would lead to Ron dying.

7. Death Clue #6: IT'S CLICHE !
It's cliché in stories of for the hero's best friend to die. Goddess J.K. has even said herself that she gets letters from kids begging her not to kill Ron because in the movies and such, the hero's best friend usually gets killed. Before anyone starts arguing that Ron's too popular to be killed, or the main trio shouldn't be broken up, consider this fact: almost NOBODY thought truthfully that Sirius would be the one to die in OoTP. In fact, most of the columns and lists of possible deaths I saw before OoTP came out either didn't list Sirius as a possibility or gave reasons why he COULDN'T be the one to die. Plus, it would almost seem like a natural progression for Harry to face- first he loses a friend (not a close friend, but a friend nonetheless) and gets traumatized when Cedric dies, then he loses his godfather and experiences the pain of losing the closest thing he had to a parent after Sirius had a chance to actually fill his godfather role... so the next step up would logically be losing one of his closest friends.

8. Ron the prophet?
Odd though it may seem, Ron may actually have some powers of prophecy/be an underpowered Seer. He's never actually made a true prediction of any sort before, but many times when he jokes about things or makes stuff up for his Divination homework, he turns out to be right. For example, think back to the beginning of the school year in Goblet of Fire. When Harry and Ron are making up their predictions for Divination, Ron suggests that Harry put down that he'll get stabbed in the back by someone he thought was a friend, then Ron himself writes down that he'll come off the worst in a fight. Harry DOES, indeed, get stabbed in the back by Ron (albeit not badly) not long after, and one could argue that Ron came off worse in their fight because all it accomplished was making Ron look like an ass for starting it and making it worse in some respects. Ron then accidentally puts himself as drowning twice in his predictions, and while Ron doesn't really drown, the first drowning could be symbolic of his "drowning" in jealousy over Harry, leading to their fight. The second obviously symbolizes the second Triwizard task. Another example of this little phenomenon is in OoTP, when Ron gloomily comments that Gryffindor has as much a chance of winning the Quidditch Cup as Mr. Weasley has of becoming Minister of Magic- and lo and behold, Gryffindor DOES end up winning the Cup. Ron's certainly no Seer, but he could have something with his amazing ability to joke and be right.

by Mary McGowan

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