I know why Narcissa asked Harry about Draco, but what I don't get is how she knew he was alive.

She's just seen him get hit with the Killing Curse by Voldemort. What makes her possibly think he is alive? Why bother asking what she surely thinks is a corpse a question?

  • 5
    She check his pulse.
    – Edlothiad
    May 8, 2017 at 15:01
  • 2
    check --> checked
    – Edlothiad
    May 8, 2017 at 15:12

2 Answers 2


She checked his body, and felt the beating of his heart

Hands, softer than he had been expecting, touched Harry's face, pulled back an eyelid, crept beneath his shirt, down to his chest, and felt his heart. He could hear the woman’s fast breathing, her long hair tickled his face. He knew that she could feel the steady pounding of life against his ribs.

"Is Draco alive? Is he in the castle?"

The whisper was barely audible; her lips were an inch from his ear, her head bent so low that her long hair shielded his face from the onlookers.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Chapter 36: "The Flaw in the Plan"

Narcissa had been ordered to verify Harry's death by Voldemort, who was understandably paranoid that something had gone wrong, but not so paranoid that he needed to see for himself.

  • 4
    I don't think it's that he wasn't so paranoid that he needed to see for himself, but that he was sufficiently paranoid that he wanted someone else to take the risk.
    – Deacon
    May 8, 2017 at 15:16
  • Sidenote, but what does it say about me that my first thought wasn't Poe himself, but the Simpsons reference? May 8, 2017 at 15:18
  • @JasonBaker It says that you have your priorities very wrong. At least by my book; I'm sure many others would not only appreciate your first thought but actually have the same thought. I do appreciate that you actually think of other things though. Something about having a more open mind and realising that there is so much more to a reference: that just because X means one thing doesn't mean X can't mean something else too! Too many fail to see that. But you still have your priorities wrong (or maybe it's just I love Poe's works - choose my poison, if you will).
    – Pryftan
    Oct 5, 2017 at 21:59

Relating specifically to the film, it would appear that she spotted that he was still moving. She then pretends to feel his pulse so that she has an excuse to linger above him, to better hear his response to her question.

NARCISSA: Is he alive...?

EXT. FORBIDDEN FOREST - CLEARING - NIGHT. Harry lies face down, glasses askew. He OPENS his eyes a millimeter, finds Narcissa’s face swimming in the dawn’s muted light, eyeing him with a strange intensity: the question, he realizes, was posed to him.

BELLATRIX: My lord, let me help you -

VOLDEMORT: I do not require assistance.

Across the clearing, Voldemort rises shakily, Bellatrix at his elbow. The Death Eaters watch, stirring uncertainly. Voldemort glances toward Narcissa, toward Harry. Bellatrix detects the wary glint in his eyes.

BELLATRIX: The boy. Is he dead?

Harry’s eyes shift, meet Narcissa’s once again. Something in her expression... He closes his eyes. She places her fingers over his heart,

NARCISSA [WHISPERS] Is he alive? Draco?

Harry hesitates and then... nods -- so subtly it’s barely perceptible. Narcissa withdraws her hand, turns to where Bellatrix stands alongside Voldemort. Nods.

The Death Eaters CHEER. Hagrid HOWLS in misery. The news seems to rejuvenate Voldemort. A fierce glint returns to his eyes. His stature grows. He eyes the Elder Wand... and smiles.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II - Original Screenplay

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