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Thread: Ariana Dumbledore

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  1. #1
    Striped_Candycane
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    Ariana Dumbledore

    I am writing a fic that includes Ariana Dumbledore, and I would like to know what other people think of her. In my opinion the best canon quote that we have to describe her is the one below.
    "It destroyed her, what they [Muggle boys] did: She was never right again. She wouldn’t use magic, but she couldn’t get rid of it; it turned inward and drove her mad, it exploded out of her when she couldn’t control it, and at times she was strange and dangerous. But mostly she was sweet and scared and harmless."
    - Aberforth, DH
    I think we can therefore see her as having a “split personality”: sometimes harmless, sometimes dangerous. I feel that she would have fits every once in a while, where she would turn from the sweet and harmless personality to the strange and dangerous ones. Which leads me to my first question:

    Do you think she would remember anything after these fits (if she did have them)? Would she feel guilty for the trouble she caused her family?


    I also, for some strange reason, imagine her as mute. Not physically so, I think she would be capable of speech, but psychologically so: she would just…never really talk. This could be a result of the trauma she had to endure as a child, or just because of the confusion of her everyday life. She might speak every once in a while, but she would have to really trust the person (I can imagine her saying a few words to Aberforth, for instance).

    So is mute Ariana a crazy idea? A possible idea? Impossible, but a good plot point?


    I also imagine her as very childlike, very innocent. She is someone who is insane, yet also more “human” then those around her (I’m not sure if anyone gets this…). In some ways, she reminds me slightly of Remedios the Beauty in Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, for those who have read it.

    Looking forwards to hearing what you all think!

  2. #2
    LucillaJoanna
    Guest
    I think we can therefore see her as having a “split personality”: sometimes harmless, sometimes dangerous.
    Do you mean that she's a little... unbalanced? Like mild schizophrenics, those with paranoia? After all, "[magic] turned inward and drove her mad". This is how I perceive your idea anyway, and if I perceived wrong, this is how I see Ariana myself. Goodness, poor girl. Trauma and magic combined struggling within her.

    My quote in point:
    "It destroyed her, what they [Muggle boys] did: She was never right again.
    I agree with your idea that she's mostly quiet, and then would be driven to a fit by the least reminder to her trauma. Or when her temper is roused, it's the magic's turn to trigger the full-blown fit. So yes, in a way, she is both harmless and dangerous. She's placid but you never know what can upset her. We have a family friend who has a daughter with Down syndrome. She's a sweet girl, but at times she'll suddenly throw a tantrum, and anything from thirstiness to her blouse's buttons to a too-crispy ice cream cone can be the reason.

    I think this is a close likening to Ariana. or if Down is too severe, think autism. Yes, almost perfect. Autistic children are known for their rages, too. And Ariana, after her trauma, might have crawled back into a world of her own, where only Aberforth sometimes ventures...

    Do you think she would remember anything after these fits (if she did have them)? Would she feel guilty for the trouble she caused her family? Is mute Ariana a crazy idea? A possible idea? Impossible, but a good plot point?


    His daughter traumatized into numb silence must have been what drove Percival to come after those Muggle boys. If Ariana reacted naturally, with tears and torrents of sobs, Percival might not have been so hasty-- he would have comforted Ariana first. But instead, he went on a rampage, with no thought to the consequences. Think about it, he's a family man, with three children. And being a Dumbledore, he must know better than to attack Muggles. But his action showed blind fury. He must have been provoked really badly. And being provoked really badly, we can assume Ariana was damaged just as bad.

    I don't think she remembers what happens after each fit exactly. In my mind, after a fit, she'll see Kendra crying, and then, Ariana will go to her and embrace her, wiping her tears, even bewildered why her mother is crying.

    If she feels guilty afterwards, how will she have reacted when she accidentally killed her mother? I don't think she'd have consented to live. But she was still there to intervene between Albus, Gellert and Aberforth a year later. *correct me if I'm wrong in this DH timeline*

    So I think she just blanks out to all except her rage during and some time after each fit. Afterward, she'll be sweet again, as if nothing happened. Each fit might be a relief, see. So after the turbulence, calm.

    These are my thoughts, Candycane. I'll be looking forward to this fic.

    ~Joanna

    Beth: Great post! 5 points

  3. #3
    hansolohpfrk
    Guest
    I think we can therefore see her as having a “split personality”: sometimes harmless, sometimes dangerous.
    No, I don't think so. Like Joanna said before, she would be unbalanced, but not a split personality like what Johnny Depp had in The Secret Window. Her story is a sensetive one, because of her mental illness. I'm sure she had her mood swings, like every other child out there does, but just wasn't able to express it like a normal child, and that rendered her dangerous.

    I think this is a close likening to Ariana. or if Down is too severe, think autism. Yes, almost perfect. Autistic children are known for their rages, too. And Ariana, after her trauma, might have crawled back into a world of her own, where only Aberforth sometimes ventures...
    I believe it would be more autism, than Down Syndrome. My brother is severly autistic, and I could relate to the Dumbledores in many different ways. Autistic kids live in their own little worlds, to build on what Joanna said, and rarely let others into it. My brother has mood swings out the ears (my family has many briuses to prove it), and I'm sure, combined with magic, would make him even more dangerous. After traumas, they move on, almost forgetting what happened. I'm not sure Ariana would forget what happened, necessarily, but I think she'd perhaps choose to ignore it. She would know she was different, there's no two ways about it (because it wasn't an issue to be born with; she was perfectly okay then).



    Do you think she would remember anything after these fits (if she did have them)? Would she feel guilty for the trouble she caused her family? Is mute Ariana a crazy idea? A possible idea? Impossible, but a good plot point?


    I believe she would choose not to remember these fits. It's not like she has a solid, diagnosable (is that even a word?) mental issue. I believe she could remember it, if she would let herself do it. I'm sure she tried to erase the memory of the boys. So, to answer your inquiry, yes, I do think she'd remember it, to a certain degree.

    I don't know if she ever really realised how she was causing her family pain. Assuming what I said before, she kind-of sealed them off, choosing to ignore them. I imagine her as someone who is just involved with the little things, like autistic children do, like playing with toys very intricately (like lining up a bunch of matchbox cars), and doesn't really involve herself with everyone else.


    As for her relationship with Aberforth, I can imagine him not trying to talk to her, like maybe Albus or Kendra would have. I believe that he understood her well enough to really communicate with her without talking to her. This would really support the line "I was her favorite." I don't believe his time spent with her was trying to get her to talk, or to do other things, as much as it may have been just silently playing with her. That is why she would do things for him, and only him, because she would percieve him as respecting her.


    And I agree with Joanna about the whole Ariana-muteness thing. I think it would be a great idea, to have her only slip a few words to Ab.

    Hope you find this useful!

    --Hanni

    Beth: Good connection with reality. 5 points

  4. #4
    Striped_Candycane
    Guest
    I've really neglected this thread...so sorry to those who posted!

    LucillaJoanna, I have to say that the story is more in the idea-and-planning stage…I haven’t actually written anything yet, although this thread really is helping me with Ariana’s characterization!

    His daughter traumatized into numb silence must have been what drove Percival to come after those Muggle boys. If Ariana reacted naturally, with tears and torrents of sobs, Percival might not have been so hasty-- he would have comforted Ariana first.
    I thought this was well-thought out. I can just see her after she was attacked, silent and scared, perhaps trembling a little…it also makes me wonder when the Dumbledore family found out she could no longer control her magic. I’m supposing they would find out later, perhaps in a few weeks’ time. This would, however, make her father attack the muggle boys merely because they had attacked his daughter, despite not knowing the full extent of her trauma. Unless he didn’t do it directly after the attack, but rather after he found out she could no longer control her magic…I’d love to have some feedback on this.

    Incidentally, does anyone know what did happen to Percival Dumbledore in the end? The Lexicon states that he mearly went to Azkaban, but I don’t know if he ever got out, or died there…

    Hansolohpfrk, you really brought up a perspective I had never thought of. Thanks for that! In fact, your post made me realize I was making up too many rules for Ariana’s condition, and that it is really more subtle than what I had first imagined.
    Autistic kids live in their own little worlds.
    This is EXACTLY how I think of it as.

    Thanks for all you guys’ help!

  5. #5
    MistressOfTime
    Guest
    Well I hate not to answer any of your questions individually, but here's a thought:

    Do you think that Ariana might've been a Helen Keller type? Unable to communicate her wishes to the world? Maybe you should do a bit of research on her and see if you can find any "similarities."


    I hope this was some help, at least! Good luck!

  6. #6
    A.H.
    Guest
    Do you think she would remember anything after these fits (if she did have them)? Would she feel guilty for the trouble she caused her family?

    I'm pretty sure that she would remember them - they are in fact the reason that she was the way that she was. The incidents with the boys only gave her the fear of her magic, can you really imagine someone being so terrified for so many years, just because of some Muggle boys messing around with her?

    The "fits" themselves might have instigated her attitude, and general fears and trust issues that she had all of her life, causing her quietness, and inablility to connect with anyone, or to accept her magic. Otherwise, every time she would get angry - or whatever caused her fits - and she was unable to control her magic, each time would affect her more, making her more scared that she was initially. It was a chain sort of thing, I believe, every time getting worse, every time making her more and more scared to be "in her own skin".

    As for feeling guilty, well, wouldn't you? If she was uncaring, then she would have found a way to weild her magic, rather than try to ignore it. Her mother, from what we know, cared deeply about her, and cared for her every day, making it to where she couldn't even have a life of her own away from her child. Ariana, knowing this, must have felt some guilt, knowing that it was her fault.

    So is mute Ariana a crazy idea? A possible idea? Impossible, but a good plot point?

    Absolutely not.

    Quote Originally Posted by pg 565, DH, Aberforth
    ... and when she was quiet, she used to help me feed the goats.
    I've always imagined Ariana as a mute too, although I had thought that Aberforth said more than just that about it. I think that it would fit perfectly.

    Hope I helped some. I hadn't checked the date of this, but maybe you still need it
    -Arianna

  7. #7
    MabelJT
    Guest
    Incidentally, does anyone know what did happen to Percival Dumbledore in the end? The Lexicon states that he mearly went to Azkaban, but I don’t know if he ever got out, or died there…
    Percival Dumbledore died in Azkaban, as stated in Deathly Hallows.

    "You know the secret of my sister's ill-health, what those Muggles did, what she became. You know how my poor father sought revenge, and paid the price, died in Azkaban."
    - Albus (Percival Wulfric Brian) Dumbledore
    Edit: It was on page 573 =)

    I hope that helped, at least a tiny bit.

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