Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter/Characters/Frank Bryce
|Muggles' Guide to Harry Potter - Character|
Role in the Books
Frank Bryce, a villager from Little Hangleton, had been invalided out of the war (timing suggests this would have been World War II) and had come home, where he had started work for the Riddle family as caretaker and gardener. When the Riddle family, Tom and his parents, had been found dead, he was the natural suspect and had been brought in for questioning; however, when they were unable to find a cause of death, Frank had been released. He had continued to keep the old manor house as best he was able, while it apparently changed ownership several times, and eventually fell vacant, though the village was never entirely sure of him. It was as part of his caretaking duties that, now quite elderly, he happened upon a couple of people who had apparently taken up residence in the house; investigating, he overheard them planning to kill someone, one Harry Potter, and discussing Bertha Jorkins who they had already, apparently, killed. While he is listening to this, a very large snake passes by; Frank is amazed when the snake evidently reports on his presence to the occupants of the room. The two people in the room, Wormtail and Lord Voldemort, then kill Frank.
Albus Dumbledore later remarks that he believes Frank's death is part of a pattern of deaths and disappearances that marks Voldemort's return to power, though the Ministry do not agree.
In the climactic duel between the now-returned Voldemort and Harry, their two brother wands are forced to duel each other. This results in the appearance of the Priori Incantatem effect, in which Voldemort's wand is forced to disgorge the last few spells it has performed. Frank Bryce is one of the five recent victims of Voldemort's wand whose shades appear as a result. Although somewhat shocked and amazed to find out Voldemort was indeed a wizard and that Harry is also one, he nonetheless reveals to Harry that Voldemort killed him, and shows the boy his support as his spell and Voldemort's clash, and as long after as the effect allows.
Frank Bryce's weaknesses become apparent as we explore his relationship with the village characters. He appears to be very antisocial as a result of the war. This estrangement prevents his correcting the village people's belief that he murdered the Riddles. Though he was proven innocent, people still continue to distrust him. An additional weakness is that he has a stiff leg as a result of the war wound that returned him home. This makes it harder for him to move around, and renders him incapable of chasing the village boys when they tear up the garden or try to damage the big house.
Relationships with Other Characters