Reviewer: Faile
Date: 11/23/05 0:04
Chapter: One-shot

I love your take on this. Very unique, portraying Remus as Snape's friend. I immediately liked the feeling that you set up with the attack on Remus by someone that we all expect to be his friend: James. You seemed very in character with everyone, and I liked how we don't get to see Snape happy all that much in the books {except when something bad happens to Harry, heh}, but you made his friendship with Remus very believeable. However, at times, your dialogue seemed rather awkward. You need to work on it, maybe read it aloud? I know that always helps me figure out if something sounds awkward. Especially in dialogue. If you can't see that it's strange, you should be able to hear it. The "Poor you" line in particular rather bothered me. That seems more like a sarcastic line than a genuinely sympathetic thing to say. Overall, however, beautiful. Great job, and keep up the good work!

Reviewer: Siriuslylupin
Date: 11/07/05 21:55
Chapter: One-shot

I, being one of the biggest Remus Lupin fans existing, thought this was one of the best fanfics I’d ever read. Actually, I still think that. :)

Reviewer: Masked One
Date: 10/31/05 23:36
Chapter: One-shot

There are so many fascinating aspects of this story. The first thing that caught my eye was the way you portrayed James as a true bully in the beginning. It was very in character for him. Similarly, I found it interesting that James attacked Lupin almost fatally in this story, while in canon it is Sirius who does the same thing to Snape. I don’t know if you made that dynamic intentionally, but it worked well, because I’ve always thought that some of the tension between Sirius and Snape came from Sirius’ pureblood background. It follows that James would feel more threatened by Lupin, who might challenge his status as teacher’s pet.

The second thing that really stood out was the Sorting Hat. We have quite a bit of evidence in canon to suggest that students have some effect on which house they’re Sorted into, and I liked the way you stated it so plainly in this story. It made me think ‘yeah, that makes sense. I bet everyone has something to say to the Hat.’ Good job with that.

I liked the way Lupin called Snape back from retaliating against James in school, and what a close thing it was. I got the impression that it wasn’t the first time he’d had to stop Snape, and it set the stage very well for Snape’s decision later in the story. Lupin could only delay Snape’s future for awhile, not stop it from happening.

I’ll touch briefly upon James’ apology. It really made me wonder what might have happened if Snape had had a more even-tempered friend in canon. Would things have gone differently. Is it strange that this what-if story sets off a bunch more in my mind?

Lastly, the ending. The way you put that flashback at the end made it so bittersweet. It was very powerful, to see Lupin hoping it would last forever, right after reading how it ended. As sad as it was, it was a very good writing device to use. It ended the story on a very emotional note.

People have already commented on the format, jumping back and forth between times. I just want to comment again on how smoothly it was done. I can only imagine that it took a lot of hard work and editing to get this to the level it’s at. Good job!

Reviewer: Ashwinder
Date: 10/31/05 21:12
Chapter: One-shot

The beginning is quite jarring since we're led to believe in POA that Remus was friends with James, Sirius and Peter from his first year onwards. I found myself wondering who the three most popular boys were until you named them. But now as I read on, I see this is a "what if" sort of thing. What if Remus hadn't become friends with the other Marauders and had made friends with Snape instead. It's fascinating, really. It changes the entire course of history, doesn't it?

I like how you have Remus and Severus find their commonality in their blood right away. It's not a point anyone would have considered before HBP came out and we learned Snape's heritage, you've used it in a way that makes perfect sense if you want to develop a friendship between the two characters. I also like the bit about Snape stealing his mother's old books. It's a nod to Harry's potions book in HBP (which had to be older than Snape's era, if you think about it. It also explains the reason Harry didn't recognise the writing in the book -- it was Snape's mother's.)

There's also a sort of parallel here with the first meeting between Harry and Draco, where Snape sings the praises of Slytherin house. Only the difference here is Snape strikes Remus as being far more sympathetic than Draco struck Harry, so Remus believes him. I'd be curious to know, though, since Remus still has his mother, and you've characterised her as a worrier, wouldn't she have pushed him towards favouring whatever house she was in in her day? Of course, you've got Remus being rebellious, so he could understandably not want to be in his mother's old house.

I like the way you've intercut the scenes between the first and fifth years. The opening scene had just the right sense of "what the heck is going on here" (as I've said) to pique reader interest. Then you immediately jump back in time to show the explanation, and it all becomes clear. Then you show the next bit from fifth year, raising the question of how the feud between Lupin and Snape and Potter and his cronies began. Then you jump back to show us that. Nice use of flashback to show rather than tell.

“Now, have you got a clean handkerchief, dear?” His mother said, checking his blazer pockets yet again. "His" shouldn't have a capital here. It's part of the speech tag, which belongs in the same sentence as the quoted part. The same with She called loudly after him further on. "She" shouldn't be capitalised as it's part of the speech tag.

Hogsmede station The proper spelling is "Hogsmeade".

Now that I've read to the end, though I see I was maybe wrong about Lupin's choice changing history. You didn't take the route I expected, in which Snape decides not to join the Death Eaters after all. I wasn't quite sure where you'd go with it, actually. At one point in the story (when they were discussing whether or not Snape should try his new spell out on Potter), I thought there was a hint that Lupin might be led to join the dark side. It could have gone either way, really, but you worked in the theme of choice once again. Lupin chose to lay aside the feud with Potter, and they worked things out. He redeemed himself through that action. On the other hand, Snape chose to harbour resentment, and that led to his chosing the dark over the light. The way you've put these two characters together and had them take separate paths was brilliant.

And then at the very end, you give us yet another glimpse into the past. One that's very normal and innocent, belying the grim future we know lies in store for both these characters. Wonderful job on this. I can see why it won the contest.

Reviewer: Kerian
Date: 10/29/05 16:51
Chapter: One-shot

Wooo- great story, very original. I agree that I was uncomfortable with James being such a jerk.. but without Remus around to tone him down its very plausible. I really liked the way you showed how completely different his life couldve been. Great work!

Reviewer: theworldisblack
Date: 10/22/05 10:09
Chapter: One-shot

Very different story. . . makes the reader think. At first, I was like "Remus in Slytherin?! This is totally wrong!" But as the story continued, I liked it, it worked, it was quite plausable. Just one thing -- at the beginning, when James was actually choking Remus, I didn't like that - I like the idea of James not being perfect, of him being a jerk sometimes as a teenager, but the choking someone seemed a little over the top. Anyway, cool story, and I think it will launch a new ship - Remus/Severus! (Just joking.)

Reviewer: mspadfoot89
Date: 10/21/05 10:51
Chapter: One-shot

Wow. Well, I don't think I have much to say here, because everyone else has already said it.

I enjoyed it immensly. I loved the whole plot and it was very well written. Especially the fact, the idea that one small choice can change your life ... but then again, not really. Some things are destined to be, as you showed in your story, with such great skill.

I do find it a bit hard to believe Snape being so close to anyone, but then again, no one can know what he was like in his childhood. I loved how in the end, you had him run out and just go after what he wants to achieve. Very well done.

Rating-10.

Author's Response: Hi hon, thank you so much for your kind review. I'm really glad you liked the story. I agree with you, Snape is a loner, but I think that he may have had that forced upon him, rather than choosing it himself - well, that was the way I thought about it anyway. Thanks again for taking the time to review, and see you in the common room xx

Reviewer: Insecurity
Date: 10/20/05 10:43
Chapter: One-shot

This is a great one-shot xadie, it looks to me like it has the potential to be the founding of a chaptered story. The AU aspect gives the story an edge and makes Lupin and Snape very compatible companions. It makes sense that the two who are both reserved and quiet would find themselves together on the Hogwarts train; both escaping the excitement of everyone else. It is a very credible premise and the way events unwind because of it was brilliant. It reminded me of a movie (one of my favourites), Sliding Doors: it tells two stories, one of this woman who caught a train, and the other of the same woman who missed the train. It shows how such simple actions or choices affect the rest of a person’s life. You challenged that idea in this fan fiction and yet in the end resolved it so that Lupin’s character returns to how we know him in the books. An interesting ending, maybe it shows that we inevitably have to end up on a certain path in life, even though our choices guide us to it in different ways. *Sits and philosophises over the idea*

The way you juxtaposed the events was amazing! You confused me at first, I wondered why on earth Lupin would be bullied by his three best friends (all written beautifully in character, by the way) and got a pleasant surprise when I found out that you had twisted it so that they were in fact enemies. Using only snippets of events worked well, as we are left wanting to know more and you do not bore us with excessive descriptions. Everything is clear-cut and simple. It helps to keep a very swift pace and so in only one chapter we discover a lot about one man’s life. The last snippet was my favourite, as you had left on a melancholy note previous to this and so lifted up the reader’s spirits by the final event. It emphasises how strong Snape and Lupin’s relationship was and gives a ray of hope. Only one peeve about this --- never put THE END on the end, it gives such finality and I think there is certain room for expansion.

I noticed a hint of OOC with Lupin near the beginning, but it may just be my view of him. This line, “I have to get on the train, Mother. Let me go!” I read as quite aggressive. I don’t imagine Lupin to be someone who would want to brush aside his mother on the platform, especially after the sheltered life he has led and the nurturing she has provided. Granted, he may have been embarrassed, but possibly just have him blush and nevertheless give his mother a wholesome goodbye.

Obviously, I was happy to find out that “baby Snape” was featured in your story. I love reading up about his school days and analysing different interpretations. The reason you gave for him condoning the Dark Arts was ingenious – it was in character for him to say it and almost justifies his reasons for supporting the Dark Arts. You show that even at a young age, Severus was aware of the darker side of humanity and of magic, and shows his courage at accepting it (and possibly vulnerability for wanting to venture into it?) The conversation made it very credible for Lupin to chose to be in Slytherin, and I like the idea of the Sorting Hat accepting this. One thing I would say, though, is that Snape does hold is heart on his sleeve in this section, especially with this line: “She was a great Witch, loved the Dark Arts.” I always saw Snape as a much more private person and I doubt he would reveal such a personal aspect of his mother’s character to someone he barely knew. He may express his interest in the Dark Arts on the train with Lupin, but I think he would get to know his new friend before opening up about his mother.

I can see the amount of effort that has gone into this story, you have constructed it well and because of that everything flows. You have taken some risk but, unlike me, you haven’t gone overboard. This “what if” scenario is both thought-provoking and enjoyable to read about, it stretches the limits of Lupin’s character and upholds Snape’s mysterious personality. I can see you have put your Ravenclaw wit to good use with this story, xadie, and I anticipate reading more of your work.

Author's Response: Wow, this is the kind of review I think comes along once in a lifetime! Thank you so much for putting so much time and effort into writing about my story. I was really overwhelmed when I read it, and I still don't really know how to begin responding to it.

I'm so pleased that you picked up on the theme that no matter what our choices, perhaps some things are inevitable. I really wanted to show that even different paths can lead to the same place. Sliding Doors is one of my favourite films, too, so maybe unconsciously I learned to believe that from it. I'll have to watch it again, I haven't seen it for ages *loves John Hannah*.

I did my best to keep the characters IC as much as possible, but I do take on board your criticisms that perhaps some moments were not quite right. What I would say is that 11 year-olds are different from adults or even teenagers, and some of the behaviours that we've seen from these characters may have been learned during their time at Hogwarts. I think with Remus, I wanted to give a real shorthand version of his relationship with his mother, and perhaps by doing that I took a lazy option. That is something that I'll think about very seriously the next time I write.

I want you to know that I really appreciate all the effort you put into your review, it means so much to me that you took the time. See you in the Common Room xx

Reviewer: Varsha
Date: 10/19/05 7:44
Chapter: One-shot

I meant to say in the '<>' that 'I rate it 10'. It didn't come though...

Reviewer: Varsha
Date: 10/19/05 7:43
Chapter: One-shot

Wow, this story was so well written and well calculated. i loved the way you've adjusted the time line and everything. Was it hard to come up with this idea. Though I ususally read humor, I loved this story. It was great :) <>.

Author's Response: Thank you for your kind review, I'm really glad you liked it even though it wouldn't usually be your sort of thing. I've never tried writing humour, I think I'd be rubbish at it, quite frankly! The idea for this story actually came from discussions we were having about Snape's character on the Beta forums, and once I had the idea it seemed to flow really easily. Thank you for taking the time to review.

Reviewer: HeRmYgInS
Date: 10/16/05 20:34
Chapter: One-shot

That was so good. Fantastic job!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for letting me know what you thought.

Reviewer: petuniahtf212
Date: 10/08/05 22:39
Chapter: One-shot

it was good dont get me wrong i liked it, but i dont think i could ever see remus as a slytherin and best friends with severus snape. i like him sooo much better as a maurader.

Author's Response: Thanks for taking the time to review, even if the story wasn't entirely to your taste. I love Remus, especially when he's with James's gang, so I see your point of view. Thanks anyway!

Reviewer: snufflesismyidol
Date: 10/08/05 14:03
Chapter: One-shot

Wow. There are no other words. Excellent writing, excellent job with the characters. Very interesting point of view. At the end, I got shivers. Good job, 10/10

Author's Response: Thanks so much for the kind review - you made me really happy :)

Reviewer: snufflesismyidol
Date: 10/08/05 14:02
Chapter: One-shot

Wow. There are no other words. Excellent writing, excellent job with the characters. Very interesting point of view. At the end, I got shivers. Good job, 10/10

Reviewer: Skiltch
Date: 10/07/05 19:09
Chapter: One-shot

I liked it; Remus and Snape were kept pretty well in character. One quibble I would have is if all the teachers would have thought of Potter as being the golden boy in this scenario -- Dumbledore, at least, seems able to spot stuff like that. I did enjoy the vivid detail, and the brief cameo of Remus's mother seemed spot-on. Very well done.

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review. I'm glad that you thought that Remus and Snape were in character. It can be hard to get the theme of perception across, and I maybe didn't get it clear enough. Remus's perception that all the teachers thought James and his gang were amazing may not have been the truth, but since they were so popular and Remus and Snape were this little oddball Slytherin pair, I thought that Remus would probably feel as though it were true. I'm really glad that you wrote an honest review and told me what you thought, it makes me think that I have to be more careful about point-of-view next time I write, and helps me to improve in the future.

Reviewer: notabanana
Date: 10/07/05 19:01
Chapter: One-shot

That was good, but the uncannoness of it bothers me (Snape being saved by Potter when sneaking into whomping willow, Snape's worst memory, etc). I like canon stories, but as far as alternate stories go, yours was pretty good.

Author's Response: Thank you very much for reviewing and letting me know your thoughts - I'm happy you did, even if this wasn't your ideal kind of story. Unfortunately, some parts of canon had to fall by the wayside - there would be no reason for Snape to be going to the Shrieking Shack in my story. Perhaps that would have meant a different future for Harry - that's an interesting point! Thanks anyway for your review.

Reviewer: MereRanger
Date: 10/07/05 16:48
Chapter: One-shot

Wow. It's taking me a bit to let that story sink in. Very thought-provoking. Snape and Remus as friends is such a simple concept yet its so hard to grasp. You've done an amazing job with that. I love that you've highlighted the fact that the smallest of choices we make during our everyday lives affects the outcome of the future in ways we couldn't begin to imagine. Excellent story- keep writing!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for the kind review. I'm glad you liked the theme of choices - I also wanted to bring in the idea that some things are just fate, like Remus eventually becoming friends with James, or Snape going off to join the Death Eaters. I'm so pleased you like the story, and really appreciate the words of encouragement!

Reviewer: Hello12345
Date: 10/07/05 1:44
Chapter: One-shot

A really original piece, your story really made me think. You captured an alternative path really well and made it believable. I got your message clearly too...what an amazing piece of writing. Well done!

Author's Response: Hey, thank you very much for your review. I'm glad that you thought the themes of the piece came across clearly, and that the whole thing was believable. It wasn't a difficult piece to write; the whole thing seemed to flow as I worked on it, so I was worried that I wasn't struggling enough for it! Thank you very much for your support.

Reviewer: kiwichik
Date: 10/07/05 1:36
Chapter: One-shot

wow, that was really deep! very well written. i love the way you helped keep Lupins personality even though he was in slytherin. it just goes to show how the simplest of choices can affect the whole outcome of your life. very, very good. congratulations.

Author's Response: Thanks so much for your review, I'm glad that you thought that Remus was still in character. I think that a lot of people assume that only morally suspect people go into Slytherin; what I wanted to show was that even a really decent person can go into that House, and can be a Slytherin without having to compromise too much. I think the main change was Remus's attitude to the Dark Arts: he came to see them as more of one side of the same coin with White Magic. Thanks again for reading my story.

Reviewer: Poultrygeist99
Date: 10/06/05 8:33
Chapter: One-shot

Bravo! What an enjoyable story! What a seemingly insignificant choice! But how many of us have stepped onto a train or bus and chosen where to sit based on our mood that day? I loved your idea of Snape dabbling in the dark arts as a way of keeping the world in balance. And the glimpse of boy-Lucious. I also enjoyed the way you kept everyone in-character even though you changed their perpectives a bit. Good job!

Author's Response: Thank you so much for your review, Poultrygeist, I'm really pleased that you think the characters were true to their canon counterparts. I worked very hard to try to keep everyone in character, and I'm really happy that you pointed that out.

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