Wow..I loved this one shot...because it put two random characters (who don't have anything to do with each other) in a random but exciting place and yet it managed to be enjoyable and mysterious. I especially loved the characterizations...of Blaise and Hermione and the common enemy Mclaggen. I loved he snarky comebacks from both Blaise and Hermione and Blaise's musings and remembrances. The humor wasn't cheesy but clever.
Hermione's Stunner at the end was fantastic...I wish I had been there at that moment. Love rulebreaking!Hermione.
Author's Response: Thank you for the compliment about the humor in this fic. It was my first HP fic, and I wasn't sure if the chance I took with the odd pairing would work.
Interesting, very interesting! I like the characterization of Hermione (though I don't really think she'd be that quick to obliviate a fellow student - I'm sure that's majorly against the rules!) as well as your take on Zabini and his family. I never really stopped to consider what it must be like for him, knowing of his mother's reputation, but I think you've catptured his feelings and thoughts very well!
Author's Response: Hermione breaks some rules in the books. She's not beyond attempted murder and blackmail, so I didn't think this was a stretch for her at this point in the story after she's fixed the Quidditch try outs. Yeah, I really hope we learn more about Blaise in book 7. He's mysterious, but wow, I think his home life must be horrible.
what a great story! Hermione is in character, which I was suprised about- when you put Hermione and being reasonably friendly to a Slytherin together, the two don't tend to come out very well. But Blaise was also done very nicely, and Cormac McClaggen.... your best character, if I do say so myself. He was DEFINETELY perfect. great job!
Author's Response: I hate McClaggen and would have liked to confond him myself. It's ironic that his character turned out so well. I guess I can write a jerk. ;)
I have not had a chance to finish your story, but I have enjoyed it already. Very fascinating characterization. I also really like your descriptions and the way you bring Blaise to life. Very, very fascinating tale. I can't wait to finish your one-shot .
Author's Response: Thanks!
Overall, a very intriguing and worthwhile read. The flow and plot was very well done, with the thoughts and real-time happenings weaving together nicely.
The characterisation in general was good; I especially admire your portrayal of Blaise. It is always fun to see a character we don't know too much about brought to life. All of his internal thoughts explain why he is so quiet. And the Hermione characterisation was great. You brought a new light to McLaggen, as well- it's interesting to see more than just stupidity.
However, the wording of a few visual descriptions-
"The lanky, mocha skinned boy"
"curly, raven tresses of hair"
"thick, amber ringlets"
Using words such as 'amber,' 'raven' and 'mocha' to describe colors is something I would not recommend. Their use among poorly-written fan fiction is rather notorious. And Hermione's hair doesn't fall in ringlets- it isn't attractively curly, just bushy. This fic was not poorly written at all; that's why those descriptions seemed out of place.
And I remember spotting a few Americanism, spelling mistakes and one or two dialogue punctuation errors- I think a beta reader might want to give this a closer look.
Despite some of my not-positive comments, I did enjoy this immensely!
Author's Response: Hmm. Yeah, I'm American, so I can see how those slipped into this fic. However, this was my first Harry Potter fic, and I reread it and went, 'oh. Those descriptions sounded like I had coffee on the brain.'
I love the way you set up the scene at the beginning. It's easy to picture the room the way an average person would, then the way Blaise does. It's a good introduction to your narrative's PoV.
However, Blaise Zabini found the odor noxious, but a corner was a convenient place to hide. I like this sentence! You might want to change 'but' to 'and,' though, to avoid a double negative.
I also loved the way you set up Blaise's background by utilising flashbacks of what people had said to him.
‘If she’d just quite questioning me, this would be great,’ he thought as they went to the right and then down several steps. This is such a perfect overachiever thought! Good relation to what we've heard about Blaise so far.
Hmm.. wouldn't Hermione have thanked Blaise for his help? Maybe not, but she usually doesn't really judge people until they're awful...
Overall, I loved the storyline. Blaise and Hermione exploring Hogwarts--it was a very interesting read! And great revelation at the end. It makes the reader wonder what Hermione was thinking!
Author's Response: Hmm. Good point about Hermione. She wasn't in a good mood that night, so I guess she was a little short tempered. ;) Yeah, I hope that we see more of Hogwarts in book 7. I've always imagined that its full of really interesting places that would be worlds of fun to explore.
I really loved this. Ever since HBP I've been a bit interested in Blaise and I think you've characterized him very well. His thoughts seem like those of many Slytherins, an uncertainty about himself. I especially liked his thoughts about Draco and Pansy, very true. The mention of the torture chambers was neat as well; it's something I can see Hogwarts having. Nice work!
Author's Response: Thank you for your comments. It's very encouraging to see other people like Blaise. Maybe I'll write some more about him in the future.
That was excellent. I have developed a bit of an interest in Mr Zabini, recently, and it was interesting to see how you portrayed him. I thought you did a good job in building up his character in a very short space of time.
The story was well structured , using Blaise's musings on the various guests at Slughorn's party to fill in some back story and to explain his attitude to his mother etc. The story flowed and had a good pace; you kept it interesting whilst filling in all those vital pieces of information.
The interchange with Hermione was humorous and believable. Loved the mention of the Unbreakable Vow. Clever!
The only concrit I have is that a few Americanisms crept into the dialogue, but it would be easy for a Brit Picker to address these if you wanted to do so. Very nice characterisation! Well done and good luck!
Author's Response: If you can address in a private e-mail any mistakes in dialogue with Americanisms, feel free to do so. I prefer to keep it out of the reviews, but if anyone at any time addresses anything privately in an email about grammer or Americanisms, I'll feel free to fix it. Actually, for accuracy, I'd enjoy fixing it.
I agree absolutely with everything the last reviwer said, this is a great story and i really enjoyed it. I think it portrays Hermione briliantly, especially how she wants to get away from Mclaggen lol. The mother is scary but you wrote it brilliantly. Well done on a great story.
Author's Response: Thanks!
Your story was a magnificent read and I really like the way you explored Blaise's character. His feelings towards his mother are very believable. The flashback to his encounter with McLaggen was very well done, I can imagine McLaggen behaving like this. Hermione was in character as well. Your portrayal of her was brilliant, especially the part where she has to trust Blaise to help her but is still uneasy about it and afraid that he won't help her at all but just lead her somewhere horrible.
I was confused by the flashbacks at the beginning, because you didn't change the tense when one of them started but after the second flashback I developed the feel for them and just knew when another one was about to start.
Your plot is really unique and I liked the old torture chambers down in the dungeons, all very believable. This was well worth the read.
Author's Response: Note: Thanks for the review. I was afraid Hermione was out of character a little bit in the beginning, but if she wasn't, well, I feel better now.