Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

by J. K. Rowling

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Chapter 25 Summary

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Shell Cottage

At Shell Cottage, Harry worries about his decision not to race Voldemort to the Elder Wand. Full of doubts, he can’t even figure out why he decided not to act. He knows he should take comfort in the fact that Lupin told him over the radio program to trust his instincts. In reality, Harry still wonders whether Dumbledore is actually dead. Harry remembers the blue eye in his shard of mirror, the silver doe Patronus, and the appearance of the Sword of Gryffindor in the pool.

Griphook decides to help Harry in return for payment: the Sword of Godric Gryffindor. When Harry doesn’t agree, Griphook angrily asserts that the Sword of Godric Gryffindor was stolen from a Goblin, Ragnuk the First. Griphook says: "It is a lost treasure, a masterpiece of Goblinwork! It belongs with the Goblins! The sword is the price of my hire, take it or leave it!”

Harry, Ron, and Hermione talk the whole thing over apart from Griphook and decide to accept Griphook’s request with the condition that Griphook can’t have the sword until all of the Horcruxes are destroyed. Griphook agrees (even though he isn’t really told precisely when he is allowed to have the sword), and they all begin planning their break-in of Gringotts.

The planning takes several weeks, with the four of them locked inside a small room at Shell Cottage for hours at a time. None of the other guests at Shell Cottage asks why Harry, Ron, and Hermione are consorting with Griphook, but they look at the four of them with apprehension and worry. Over time, the health of the guests at Shell Cottage begins to improve and they begin taking their leave.

Suddenly, a very ill Remus Lupin appears and declares that his wife, Nymphadora Tonks, has had a baby boy that they have named Ted (after Nymphadora’s father, who gave his life for the Order of the Phoenix). Lupin asks Harry to be the godfather.

Bill also gives a grave warning to Harry to be aware of any bargain that he may have made with Griphook because “Goblin notions of ownership, payment, and repayment are not the same as human ones.” Goblins believe that the true owner of any treasure is the maker, not the being that buys or takes the treasure. Bill relates that breaking into Gringotts would be a lot less dangerous than going back on a promise to a Goblin regarding important treasure.

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