He walked on. Some of the Death Eaters he passed in silence, but he paused before others and spoke to them.
"Macnair ... destroying dangerous beasts for the Ministry of Magic now, Wormtail tells me? You shall have better victims than that soon, Macnair. Lord Voldemort will provide..."
"Thank you, master... thank you," murmured Macnair.
Voldemort passed on, his eyes gleaming. A few steps brought him to the first gap in the circle of hooded figures. He paused, and looked down. The silence lengthened. Soon, all the Death Eaters were following their Lord's gaze.
It rested upon a duck. To be more precise, upon a mallard. A male of the genus Anas, species platyrhynchos, which was vainly trying to hide from Voldemort's attention behind Crabbe Senior's robes.
Nobody spoke. Hardly anyone dared draw breath. At length, Voldemort nudged it with his boot.
"Ah," he breathed at last. "Dibley, if I am not greatly mistaken." The duck emitted a strangled quack.
There was much nodding among the Death Eaters, and a few whispered "I told you so"s.
Voldemort stooped and stared into the duck's eyes.
"The Anseriformis Curse? I see. Terrible, terrible. Those Weasley boys. But Dibley, what am I to do with you?"
The duck remained silent, frozen into position, until the Dark Lord turned and spread his hands to his minions.
"Tell me," he asked mildly, "does anyone among you happen to have any oranges on him?"