With her revelation that Harry Potter would have been a more suitable match for Hermione Granger – though Ron and Hermione’s marriage can endure with a bit of counseling – J.K. Rowling has once more cast her spell over Harry Potter fans. In September 2013 the forthcoming spinoff movie following Newt Scamander’s adventures in writing Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was announced, and this summer Universal Studios Florida will unveil Diagon Alley, but what fans truly want are more magical stories. J.K. Rowling has said that while she has no interest in either prequels or sequels to the wildly popular series, she is open to ideas that are an “extension of the wizarding world.” What extensions do we really want to see?
The Founding of Hogwarts
How do Godric Gryffindor, Salazar Slytherin, Helga Hufflepuff and Rowena Ravenclaw come together to form one of the world’s most prestigious schools of witchcraft and wizardry? Throughout the seven books and eight movies, we learn some tantalizing bits of Hogwarts history – most notably with Hermione’s frequent references to Hogwarts, A History – but getting the full tale would offer insights into what magical education entails.
The Hogwarts ghosts are just as much a part of the school as its students and teachers, but what are their stories? We learn in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets that Nicholas de Mimsy-Porpington – more familiar as Nearly-Headless Nick – has a brutally botched execution story, and we get a sense of the history between the Gray Lady and the Bloody Baron in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but how does Peeves the Poltergeist become a Hogwarts haunter? How is the Fat Friar connected to Hufflepuff House?
Life at Gringotts
Gringotts Wizarding Bank is the ultimate symbol of magical power, not only for Harry Potter – the poor boy wizard who never had any money in the muggle world – but also for Tom Riddle, who coveted one of the deepest vaults in the goblin-guarded bank. But what other enchantments and protections lie deep beneath Diagon Alley? Griphook alluded to the many curious objects in the vaults at Gringotts in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but what might they be? And what does it take to be a curse breaker like Bill Weasley?
In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire we get the merest glimpse of what other wizarding schools – Durmstrang and Beauxbatons – are like, but surely there are other magical academies and institutions around the world. What would a magical school be like in California, for example, or Japan? How would it differ from the Hogwarts we know and love? We know wizards exist in other parts of the world – they came together for the Quidditch World Cup – but what are their parts of the wizarding world like?
Dawn of the Dementors
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban introduces us to the dark side of the wizarding world with the first appearance of dementors, but what is a dementor? We know of their happiness-draining presence and soul-sucking kisses, and we learn in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince that their breeding causes unnatural cold and dreary fog. But was a dementor once a wizard, perhaps one who has been kissed and driven mad? Or is it another type of dark creature altogether? Where are they found in the wild, and how did they come under wizard control? Perhaps Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will offer more hints.
Life in Prison
What are Azkaban and Nurmengard, the nefarious wizard prisons, really like? How were they built, and what are the stories of their prisoners? Sirius Black was able to survive 12 years in Azkaban with his animagus powers, so have other prisoners fared as well? Why were Bellatrix Lestrange and her fellow Death Eater escapees still mentally sound enough to rejoin Lord Voldemort even after their tenure in what is supposed to be the ultimate incarceration?
The Twin Cores
Two phoenix feathers were the beginning of two of the most powerful wands in existence, two wands that would seek to destroy one another even while strangely connecting their owners. But how were Tom Riddle’s and Harry Potter’s wands created? In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows we learn more about wandlore than in all of the previous six books combined, but there is much more to be learned.
Arthur Weasley is fascinated by muggles, as befits his position in the Misuse of Muggle Artifacts Office, but when muggles and magic collide, what are the results? How do wizards feel about muggles’ non-magical magic – electricity, computers and other technology, for example – and what truly happens when muggles get a glimpse of the wizarding world? No memory modification can keep Harry Potter fans from wondering if they may have seen glimpses of magic in their own muggle lives.
Every Harry Potter fan may want to know more about their favorite characters, and while J.K. Rowling has provided glimpses of those stories in official and unofficial epilogues as well as the fansite Pottermore, those stories may never be truly revealed. Fortunately, there are always more tales in the wizarding world that could come to life, if J.K. Rowling would once more grant us the magic of her pen.