I've just got one nitpick (I just can't help it): (All always seemed clear, but he kept the proviso in the plan just to be prepared) Full stop in the parenthesis.
Kaye, won't go there again. =D
I just adore the beginning of this. I'm not even two paragraphs into the story and I'm already pulled in; the fire sentence—or thought, rather—was absolutely wonderful. I'm not quite sure how to explain it articulately but I do love how you've begun with explaining his daily routine, coupled with the line "On a very good day […]." I can just relate so well. Everyone sometimes falls into a routine and the later in the day that routine brings you, the happier you become. Very nicely done. And I also love how we're seeing this badass Auror doing simply mundane things—it's setting up so well for, going by the summary, what this story is about.
So far (I'm to the first asterisk-marked break) I think the characterization of Moody is spot on. No other character who's simply sitting on his porch would mentally run through the actions of the innocent-looking new neighbor—the detailed monologue of this woman, would, without us knowing the character who's narrating, automatically bring anyone's mind to Moody. Also, the bit about the microwave and telling Arthur made me giggle. =D
Overall, I loved this chapter. The letters to Elizabeth's mother were a very interesting way to introduce us to this character; we're not seeing her in a completely rounded light, but from just these letters we have a very nice image of her and her personality.
Careless old man! How in Merlin’s name are you supposed to know she needs one? Shaking, Alastor Moody, who had faced Grindelwald’s followers, who had faced Muggle Nazis, who had faced Death Eaters, sank into a chair, and put his face into his hands.
was just too adorable. Again, we're seeing the badass, fearless, vigilant Moody in a vulnerable and normal situation. I think you've really gone outside of the box where his character is concerned; not only are you taking him completely out of the element we see him in in the series, but you've built a character that is very IC but also original.
On to the next chapter...
Author's Response: If that is the only nit you can find to pick, then I am ecstatic! Thank you so so much for the detailed review. It seems I managed exactly what I was aiming at. We see one Moody when Barty Crouch is imitating him, but when we meet him in Grimmauld place we see another side, and I wanted to show how the sides connect. His story fascinates me. I'm glad I am making this vision of him believable. The letters...I had to think what he'd find in her trash that would intrigue him, and make him want to meet her. He is very methodical. I figured Constant Vigilance would require that.... Thanks again for the review!