Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
How we cite our quotes:
There was a sudden movement behind them. Gilderoy Lockhart's knees had given way.
"Get up," said Ron sharply, pointing his wand at Lockhart.
Lockhart got to his feet – then he dived at Ron, knocking him to the ground.
Harry jumped forward, but too late – Lockhart was straightening up, panting, Ron's wand in his hand and a gleaming smile on his face.
"The adventure ends here, boys!" he said. I shall take a bit of this skin back up to the school, tell them I was too late to save the girl, and that you two tragically lost your minds at the sight of her mangled body – say good-bye to your memories!" (16.214-218)
Professor Lockhart is so frightened of what is waiting for them at the end of the tunnel that he doesn't seem troubled about leaving Ginny to become a "mangled body." As someone whose entire reputation is built on lies and Memory Charms, Professor Lockhart's whole life must also be ruled by the fear that he's going to be found out. Why might Lockhart choose to live his life with so much uncertainty? What is he getting out of this hypocrisy? What does Professor Lockhart appear most afraid of? How do Lockhart's fears shape his character in the novel?