Author's Notes: Written for Estella May's "Dramatic Monologue" Challenge on xoxLewrahxox's Bellatrix Lestrange forum.

"Your assignment is to write a dramatic monologue from the POV of any character. No limitations on word count."

Voldemort greets the Lestranges after their escape from Azkaban.


Welcome back, my three most faithful, welcome back.

I must say, I am glad to see you again. I was beginning to worry Azkaban and the Dementors would claim all four of my true followers.

Ah, Bellatrix, my dear, I know you would follow me anywhere. You are a powerful witch, of course, but it is your faith that makes you my finest living Death Eater. Your trust is stunning, especially taking into consideration the behavior of most of the Death Eaters I believed were faithful to me. Though all three of you were in Azkaban, I know that you, Bellatrix, unlike your husband and brother-in-law, loved every moment of it, because you knew it was for your Lord and that I would come for you eventually. There has never been any question that you are my most faithful. And you will be rewarded beautifully for your trust in me, of that you can be sure.

Rodolphus, Rodolphus Lestrange. Perhaps not as skilled as your wife, but hardly less valuable. It is only because of you that Bellatrix is able to use her talent to the best effect. Why, without you, Rodolphus, Bellatrix would be a proverbial loose cannon. But with you as her foil, she is the most powerful witch this world has seen in a long, long time. Oh, don't think I don't appreciate your own power. You can handle a wand well enough. But, in honesty, you will always be a Death Eater whose purpose is to augment your wife.

And Rabastan. Always forgotten. Bellatrix outshines you, Rodolphus overshadows you, and you are left behind, the last and least. But don't think that I have forgotten you. Without you, Bellatrix would be caught in an instant, and Rodolphus would be unable to help her. It is only your intelligence that keeps them safe. Why, if circumstances had been slightly different, I have no doubt that you could have talked your way out of Azkaban, and the ways of Bellatrix and Rodolphus as well.

And finally, a moment of silence in memory of young Bartemius Crouch. He served well, very well, the best of all my Death Eaters – yes, better than even you, Bellatrix. He had your skill, Bellatrix, your strength, Rodolphus, and your intelligence, Rabastan. At such a young age as well. Taken far before his time, by the Dementor's kiss. Yes, a moment of silence.

And now, my three most faithful, my brilliant triad, we come to the crux of our discussion, the reason I have called you to me, separate from the others. No, it was not merely to praise your skill and welcome you back. I have a task for you three to help carry out.

Perhaps you have heard of a certain prophecy?