Wow. My oh my. This story was just so amazing.
I absolutely adored the way that you made the quotes from the book fit in so seamlessly with your story. I imagine that took alot of effort. You combined a great story with these quotes perfectly. It was, for lack of a better word, amazing. Phenomenal.
You captured Dumbledore oh-so-perfectly. This is exactly like something he would imagine. And it is exactly what Voldemort would have done too. Super.
I enjoyed every single aspect of this fic. It is one of those ones you just want to read again, to make sure you got everything out of it.
I would like to really applaud you for this fic. It was a job really well done.
Congratulations; I wish I could write something like this.
I'm part of bertibott12's Writing Methods class, and we were assigned your story to review this week. I felt like trying to restructure my review to fit into the format on the Archives would be a little difficult to understand, especially since I can't preview the review first to see if the formatting worked or not, so here is the link to my review posted in my assignment thread: http://fanfiction.mugglenet.com/forum/showthread.php?p=248578#post248578
Wow. Okay. This was an extremely emotional piece. It really makes the reader think about what’s going on. I really like how you incorporated Harry’s and Professor Dumbledore’s words into the story. It was beautiful, in a sad, sort of sick way.
It makes a lot of sense for “Dumbledore’s Worst Nightmare” is that he’s powerless against Voldemort. We now know that he relived his sister’s death, but as this story was put on the archive before DH was released, your idea of what happened while he was drinking the potion is really IC of what we knew of Dumbledore then.
Dumbledore nodded at Voldemort.
I love how it starts out with Dumbledore feeling comfortable and feeling like he’s in control of the situation.
For the first time ever when facing his former student, Dumbledore felt unnerved.
I really like how Dumbledore’s attitude changes before Voldemort has even said anything. I like the way it starts with his appearance and then it only goes downhill from there.
It was Minerva McGonagall.
It makes sense that it starts out with one of Dumbledore’s colleagues and the progresses to people that he’s closer to all the way to Harry. It shows that Voldemort understood Dumbledore a lot more than Dumbledore ever guessed.
It struck him: he was powerless to Voldemort.
You used the word “powerless” a lot. Unless you were intending to keep using it over and over again to make a point like the word “honourable” in Mark Antony’s speech in Julius Caesar, but I don’t think you were intending "powerless" to mean anything other than "without power." Perhaps you could have used incapable or helpless or weak in the sentence: He was utterly powerless; he could do nothing to strike back. to vary up your verb use and keep the reader interested.
He was so horrified by the scene unfolding in front of him that he was unable to string the words together more coherently.
I really like how you explains why he couldn’t form sentences.
One thing that stood out to me: there were almost no setting details. You set the scene at the very beginning, saying that it was at a grave yard, but that’s it. I think you could have added some more details about what everything looked like and really painted a dark, horrifying scene for us.
It was an amazing, deep, and heartfelt piece.
My first thought upon reading this story was, [I]'No. he was thinking of the night Ariana was killed.'[/I]. If I had read this before reading DH, then that would not have been in my mind. So, I reread it, and thought of the possibility he wasn't thinking of that night.
I will admit to having an issue at first with the characterization of Dumbledore as helpless and not fighting back. Then I read between the lines and realised, this was Dumbledore's worst fear coming to light. His worst fear of not being able to save the ones he loves. It is also a portrayal of his guilt. He feels incredibly guilty at not being able to protect those he loves. Of not being able to prevent the deaths that to this point had already happened and knowing he would soon be dead himself, not being there to prevent the deaths he knew were sure to come.
He also feels the guilt of knowing in the end, Harry must die to save the Wizarding world from Voldemort.
I believe this story conveyed Dumbledore's fears and guilt very convincingly. It showed exactly what the potion he was drinking was doing to him. By including the exact lines from HBP, the reader was able to be in both stories at the same time. It was done effortlessly, or so it seemed. The combining of both stories, made this one seem more real.
The writing was incredible in that it drew you in right from the start. The description was subtle enough that you didn't feel overwhelmed by it, but strong enough that you felt every emotion the characters were feeling.
The shorter paragraphs kept the story moving at a very quick pace. Which in this story is the rate you want the story to read. You need to read this story at a fast pace to get the full effect of it happening as quickly as the scene in the book was done.
Overall, this story makes you wonder just what Dumbledore experienced in those moments. Could my perception and Harry's that he experienced the night of Ariana's death be faulty?
When the story began I wasn’t quite sure what was going on, or to be more precise I wasn’t aware that it was a dream. As the story moved on this became clear, but it wasn’t until I realised whose voice the italics were that I actually grasped where the dream was taking place, and I have to say that it was fantastic!
The swirl of emotions that Dumbledore feels, coupled with the guilt that we know Harry feels is beautifully done. The words Harry speaks are eerie coupled with the dream and what Dumbledore is seeing. I was slightly sceptical at first due to the characters that were brought up: James, Lilly, Remus and Sirius, but as more characters were introduced it became clearer what was being expressed. It wasn’t who those people were, but that they were people Dumbledore couldn’t protect, and was harming them himself. The mixture between those still alive, and those already dead, truly showed Dumbledore’s worst fears of being the cause of the deaths. I found that by mixing them it showed what has passed, and what is to be, for Dumbledore, and how it is all his fault. That was the beauty of the nightmare.
The structure of the piece also really helped draw the emotion home. The one line paragraph of “It was Minerva McGonagall,” conveyed the shock and consequent horror that Dumbledore felt. Equally the rest of the story ran in much the same way; the shorter sentences and breaks really gave it a sense of the unrest and unease, while the longer areas stopped it from getting too choppy.
As the story ended it really picked up speed, which helped to show just how desperate and upset Dumbledore was. The Death of Harry by Dumbledore’s hand, and that Dumbledore did it of his own free will, shows just how upset and confused he was. Just how desperate he was for everything to be okay, and for them not to lose.
All in all this was a wonderfully put together story and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
Whoa... I mean, if I hadn't read Deathly Hallows, that would be what I had expected Dumbledore to see. And to think that a potion could do that to him? Whoever brewed that must have had a load of magic instilled inside it or a very sadistic personality - or both. To instill that sort of insanity would have required prodigious skill in potionmaking, not to mention strong enough ingredients, potent enough to affect the mind. Still, excellent job!
Wow, that was a great rendition of what Dumbledore's last moments may have been...where that potion cast his mind. Great descriptions and you described the feelings very well, too.
I have read this story two times already, and each time it seems to get better and better. I honestly love the way it was written, and how you made sure that what Harry had said to Dumbledore was in there. Although, I know that was the point. ;)
The way you pictured what Dumbledore saw when he drank the liquid makes a lot of sense seeing as how we all know how much he cares about everyone. It is also understandable how he felt worse about killing Harry, then the rest.
Another thing I love is how you mentioned many other people that he had been forced to kill before Harry. It makes you wonder if Harry was even going to be one of them. ;)
All in all, I really loved this story!! It is honestly one of the best ones I have ever read.
Hey Fresca! This was incredibly sad, but also it was incredibly touching the way Dumbledore loved all those he was forced to kill. It was not really what I expected really, I was thinking that it would be something along the lines of a personal face-off between him and Dumbledore, but as you shown, Dumbledore loves others more than himself and he would willingly sacrifice himself to save the ones he loves as we've seen in HBP right after this scene. The grammar and spelling was immaculate (as always!) and the elements that you incorporate from the books, such as the lines from the cave, make this one shot really enjoyable. Good job!
Author's Response: Thanks for your review, Allie! I don't know why everyone always wants to read and review this story, but I'm glad that you liked it. :)
Wow. That was a great look at what Dumbledore saw. I tried over and over again to imagine what he was thinking, and I couldn't think of anything nearly as creative as this. Excellent job.
This was amazing! The way you described Dumbledore was great, except that I didn't think he would ever be that powerless. Voldemort feared him greatly. Also, the plot was great, and kept me reading throughout the fic. It was amazing, but I think that you could have characterized Harry better. I understand that he might have been under a trance, but not without a fight. Great story! It's going on my favs list!
Colores! Great job, this is very good. It was very intense and I loved every second of it :). You are an excellent Author, and a great friend .
Wow! I must say, after an entry like this, you've got the contest in the bag. You've got excellent portrayal of the characters, and amazing description.
But Voldemort’s face was different: it no longer held any trace of youth. Dumbledore was usually able to find the innocence hidden within the hatred of Voldemort’s face, the human side of the Dark Lord, but there was nothing there – nothing but inhuman malice filled the lines of Voldemort’s face and shined through his eyes.
This is very interesting. I've never actually thought of Voldemort being human; it's just the opposite the way he acts. *has just watched a movie on the Holocaust* You've got his face described very well. I absolutely love it the way you did. It's perfectly canon towards the books.
Dumbledore jerked slightly at the sudden movement, but he did not raise a finger to stop Voldemort, not wanting to make him angrier than he already was.
I can't see Dumbledore doing this. Dumbledore is the only wizard that Voldemort ever has feared; he would not be scared of someone who is scared of him. Not only that, but I know that Dumbledore wouldn't actually try to make him angry, but it still felt odd in that sentence. It just kind of stuck out to me.
It was Minerva McGonagall.
Whoa. You really know how to get someone's attention! That was such a great line and great person to use.
It struck him: he was powerless to Voldemort. He could do nothing to stop Voldemort from killing the people around him. It was all over.
This is some extremely amazing writing, dear. Dumbledore is not one of my favourite characters, but seeing him think like that just made my heart jump. I sympathise him greatly, in your story, now, and think that you have a great plot going on here. Very interesting concept to tie in.
Dumbledore felt his chest tighten, constricting his breathing. He could not imagine having to point his wand at anyone and utter those dreaded words, let alone at Minerva McGonagall.
“I don’t want…don’t make me…” he whispered in horror.
Oh, wow! You have a VERY interesting plot here. It ties in with just what Dumbledore says in the book, and you've portrayed his emotions on killing his fellow colleague (and perhaps more than a colleague) perfectly. I also think that you meant to have this last sentence italicised, but no biggie.
Why don’t you betray him once more; don’t you want to hear him scream in pain?
This is such a tiny nitpick, but is just trying to help . . . You might want to change the semi-colon after "more" to a question mark.
He aimed the wand at two of the three and, in a flash of green light, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley fell to the ground dead.
Oh no! I How dare you kill Hermione and Ron? *blushes and straightens shirt* It's horrid how Dumbledore has to keep on being forced to kill all of those he loved and watch them die around him. Your portrayal of Voldemort is amazing (but horrible!).
I feel that this story actually could use a higher rating. It's just for 3rd/5th years, right? This fiction has quite a lot of death and mature themes in it . . . you might want to consider it. As they talked about on the forums, you have to be very careful, but it's just a suggestion, my friend!
The victims touched Dumbledore all at once and Dumbledore found himself overcome with sadness, grief, and despair. He felt the last of his life leave him as he gave a great, rattling gasp, and fell to the ground, lifeless.
What an amazing ending. And here, I am being most definite and truthful when I say this. This story was very deep; you did a great job in the work and portrayal of all the characters, and watching Dumbledore be put through that is just awful. But you have a writing style that is very powerful. I admire that very much. I'm sure that you put a TON of hard work and perseverance into this story. Fantastic work and I wish you luck in the challenge!
That nearly destroyed me... if angst is what you were looking for, this certainly produced it.... great write... incredibly, horribly morbid.. but great nonetheless
Author's Response: Thank you for your review.
Yet another story that has proven to me that it's worthwhile to stop by the Badger Review Circle from time to time. This was absolutely amazing, and I'm simply shocked that there are not more reviews tacked onto this story!
First of all, you have an extremely impressive writing style. Your readers should admire it greatly. I was completely engrossed. You gave just the right balance of description and dialogue. Nothing felt overdone. I could practically see the graveyard, the cloaked figures, Dumbledore sinking to his knees. Perfect imagery.
At first, I found it hard to accept that Dumbledore was so powerless... but then I realized that if this were truly his nightmare, that's how things would be. And in such a weak state, his astonishing vocabulary and sentence structure would certainly be diminished. It took awhile for me to accept this, but you managed to convince me of the fact that he was just so weak that he was losing himself. Well done!
The overall concept and idea of your story; inspired! You clearly did some thoughtful reflecting to fully flesh-out this idea, and yet the premise was so basic. To be powerless in a situation where he must save those he loves... truly a nightmare for anyone, but an especially hard-hitting one for Dumbledore, who (I think) has a greater understanding of love than most. This story is riddled with some nice symbolism, I loved it!
I was rendered speechless as some of the most loveable characters in the series were knocked off one by one. The way you pulled off their deaths in such a quick fashion was really well done. I was especially impressed that the body count didn't come off as sounding like a list. I thought the deaths were nicely balanced with the developing feelings from Dumbledore's perspective.
Speaking of, the way you conveyed feelings here was really amazing. I was especially touched by the following passage:
"He dropped to his knees at Voldemort’s feet, sobbing, as his love-filled heart was broken over and over again. His compassion, his kindness fell victim to Voldemort’s abuse and manipulation."
Very good description. You've managed to make very complicated emotions accessible to your reader. To make someone understand Dumbledore's feelings throughout this was, I imagine, very difficult. Death is not an easy subject to tackle, but you managed it with grace.
Interpolating Harry's dialogue from Half Blood Prince was a fabulous addition to the story. It added the extra punch to the extremely dramatic moments, and helped fit your one-shot in nicely with its corresponding moment from the original text. I practically accepted this as canon as I read it! You truly convinced me that there is nothing else Dumbledore could have seen the moment that this all was happening.
You know what is truly impressive? I only noticed one typo in your story! You, my friend, have a very good beta. Just a missing period below, the location of which I've noted below:
"Dumbledore raised his wand, hating himself for what he was about to do, and muttered the dreaded curse The flash of green light hit Harry"
It's between "curse" and "The" that the period seems to have disappeared. But that's all I saw! I'm sure that can be fixed up with ease.
I can honestly say that I would be surprised if you do not win the challenge. I know that is probably not fair for me to say, as I have not read the other entries, but I would still be shocked regardless. This is a great example of a one-shot at its best. Congrats on truly exploring the mind of our favorite headmaster in his last moments. I believe this story will be going in my favorites!
Author's Response: Wow...and now I am speechless. Your review is absolutely amazing. Thank you so much for your compliments. I am thrilled and honored to have written a story that has made it onto your favorites list. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
omigod! that is so...so...my god. For the first time in nearly two years that I have been reviewing, I am literally at a loss for words. That is saying something.
Author's Response: Wow...thank you so much!
Oh god. This was incredible really, very clear and to the point. You didn't over-do it.
Author's Response: Your compliments are so sweet! Thanks for making me smile. =)
Author's Response: Your compliments are so sweet! Thanks for making me smile. =)
That was amazing! Totally fit in with everything. Kudosss, awesome job. Loved it.
Author's Response: Thank you so much for your compliments!