Narcissa Malfoy is a rude and racist witch, but there are several moments in the series that I think show Narcissa’s better side.
In Spinner’s End, chapter 2 of Half Blood Prince, Narcissa is desperate to keep her son safe. Despite her sister’s warnings and Voldemort’s instructions to not speak about the plan involving Draco, she risked Voldemort’s wrath to do everything she could to persuade Snape to either change You-Know-Who’s mind or see if Snape would be willing to kill Dumbledore himself. This resulted in Narcissa getting Snape to agree to making the Unbreakable Vow, which couldn’t have been easy to do. All of this accomplished because she loves her son.
Death Eater headquarters has taken over Malfoy Manor in Deathly Hallows. Lucius has fallen out of grace with the Dark Lord and the family is mocked for their connection to Lupin and Tonks. It’s a very stressful time for the Malfoy family, and when under pressure both Draco and Lucius look to Narcissa for guidance. Narcissa is able to keep her cool and her cover and get her family to the next day.
Again, using her love for her only son, Narcissa finds the courage to lie straight to Voldemort’s face in chapter 36 of Deathly Hallows, the Flaw in the Plan. Her main reasoning may have been selfish, wanting to go to Hogwarts to find Draco, but her resolve was the first event of several, starting a domino effect that led to Neville killing Nagini, Molly killing Bellatrix, and Harry’s final confrontation with Voldemort. If she hadn’t been bold enough, who knows how long the war would have gone on?
Narcissa Malfoy is an antagonist of the Potter series, but she is the protagonist of her own story. The love she has for her family is not dissimilar to any of the other character’s love or actions in the series and deserves to have a light shined on it.
In the Harry Potter Lexicon Minute podcast you’ll hear the voices of our editors sharing some of the many little things which delight us about the Wizarding World. In each podcast, one to two minutes in length, we’ll talk about anything from cool trivia and interesting canon passages to the latest Wizarding World news. We hope you’ll join us! And we’d love to hear from you as well. Feel free to use the comment section on the blogpost for each podcast to post your thoughts.