Reviews For As the Light Fades
Reviewer: TheVanishingAct
Date: 08/26/08 20:02
Chapter: Shadows

So, reading through the summary, I immediately noticed that your imagery was going to be utterly brilliant. I’d be hard pressed to think of an author who has better imagery than you do - I mean honestly, your words always mingle into this like… feast of stunning visuals that you just can’t help but read two or three times just to fully bathe in the beauty. Secrets dance through whispered words…as the light fades. Really, Sarah? It’s gorgeous imagery. And, now that’s 80 words on the summary alone… let’s move on to the actual fic, shall we? ;)

The scene set up here is entirely romantic - Narcissa lying in a field of daisies, waiting for her companion to arrive? Her skirt fluttering upward in a gentle breeze? Well, we certainly know what purpose this sort of environment serves, don’t we? I could go pages and pages and pages about your word choice and how these visuals paint such an incredible picture in my head, but I won’t allow myself the pleasure. After all, I want to finish this review tonight.

On that vein, let’s move forward - Narcissa’s companion is five years her junior, still in school, and since I had no idea of the pairing when I began reading, I figured this could be just about anybody. But no, no, it wasn’t just anybody. You had a rather clever way of expressing it too, as it caught me off guard to read “No, James, you know that’s not how we play.” Literary surprise is often difficult to achieve but you pull it off brilliantly here. And then, their movements - which carry on for most of the rest of the fic - are so fluid and experienced and real; it feels like this is an actual novel I’m reading and that it won prizes for it’s fluidity.

I love how you take note of Narcissa’s dominance, and then go on to say That was why it was so easy to take control of him – he would never hurt her, or be anything less than gentle with her. The naivety of this statement illustrates this sort of summer love tone that you established - it’s brilliant, it’s lovely to read, but most of all, it’s simply heartbreaking. We know this won’t last forever, but poor Narcissa - she doesn’t know any better, and both she and James seem to be in a state of bliss; a dream that they don’t want to wake up from, but we know she’ll marry Lucius, that she’ll become engaged. And that they’re in love, and it won’t work out between them.

Before I venture any further, I have to say that it was quite a good idea to illustrate their little love meeting thing with Narcissa’s point of view, because then the reader knows that Narcissa really did love James, and that it wasn’t a fling - and that makes James’ heartbreak even harder to witness. I also believe that the second half of this story can be summed up best with: Oh, wow. : (

That was absolutely LOVELY, Sarah! Thank you for the fabulous treat! :D

Reviewer: betty boop
Date: 08/01/08 19:32
Chapter: Shadows

wow I've never read a James/Narcissa fic.. u know at first it broke my heart xD cuz i'm 100% James/Lilly but then I continue reading and it made sense u know, I really REALLY like it!!! You know what would great? if you would've make Lilly appear you know but anyway, I'd really love to read a fic like that and I think that you're the one to do it ..
Well Love your Work it's awesome and it ended G R E A T!!
Ciao

Reviewer: betty boop
Date: 08/01/08 19:25
Chapter: Shadows

wow I've never read a James/Narcissa fic.. u know at first it broke my heart xD cuz i'm 100% James/Lilly but then I continue reading and it made sense u know, I really REALLY like it!!! You know what would great? if you would've make Lilly appear you know but anyway, I'd really love to read a fic like that and I think that you're the one to do it ..
Well Love your Work it's awesome and it ended G R E A T!!
Ciao

Reviewer: i AM lily potter
Date: 06/17/08 17:01
Chapter: Shadows

Oh. My. Gosh.
Wow. James and Narcissa??

Awesome.
The only thing I would suggest is a little more background on the time and everything...but then again, that kinda makes it mysterious...keep it up. you rock.

Reviewer: One Small Fish
Date: 06/05/08 15:34
Chapter: Shadows

Totally fantastic, but i would have liked some more development with the characters. A bit more information would have been great too, but all of that is very hard to put into a One Shot. For the most part, it was excellent.

Reviewer: violetta
Date: 02/18/08 17:09
Chapter: Shadows

Well...how horrific. Their relationship that is-not your writing. I think that was very beliveable, and in cannon. Excellent job.

Author's Response: Thank you very much!

Reviewer: MissyQuill
Date: 01/19/08 6:58
Chapter: Shadows

A wonderful story and a wonderful pairing. I never thought of Cissy as a human being but that's all changed now thanks to you. I enjoyed this very much.=Sammy

Author's Response: I'm really glad that you could identify with Narcissa, and yes, I rather like them as a couple too! Thanks for your review.

Reviewer: Dory_the_Fishie
Date: 11/25/07 14:00
Chapter: Shadows

Guh! Sarah, this is awesome. I love it. I was totally not expecting the James/Narcissa pairing, and I really quite like it. I actually don’t think I’ve read any fic with this pairing, which only made reading this one all the more lovely.

You always blow me away with your writing. The beginning of this is perfect – it sets up everything so well and the imagery is beautiful. I wasn’t even thinking about whom Narcissa was waiting for, just the feeling of love that you created. This sentence was priceless: A small breeze rippled her dress as it passed, and she held it down firmly, knowing that later on it would be lifted once more, but with increased purpose. And then, how she giggles childishly – it’s great.

When you mention that the guy is five years her junior, I immediately (and perhaps naturally) thought Severus, and then the ‘striking physique’ sort of threw me off. So I was eagerly waiting to find out who had captured Narcissa like this. His first line has a rather mysterious, yet playful, quality to it; it’s all very lovely. And then she says his name and I was like o.0. I like how Narcissa really seems to be in control of everything here; after all, James is her junior. It’s a side of her character that I think gets overlooked in the books, and to see it here is wonderful.

But of course, she couldn’t evade capture for long. Aw. You’ve portrayed these two in a way that I wouldn’t have imagined, and I love it. They’re really in love, and even though I love James/Lily, I’m finding myself cheering for James/Narcissa while reading this. I love when James tells Narcissa that he loves her, but I have to admit I didn’t so much love the ‘I think’ in Narcissa’s answer. To me, it seems like she would have been firmer in her response, but perhaps you were going for a more vulnerable side of her? And, I suppose that leads nicely into her lack of control later.

The juxtaposition of the two sceneries for the two main parts of this fic is great. First we have the sunny and calm summer day, then we have the dark and still summer dusk/night. I’m not sure how I feel about the mention of Lily. To me, it seemed like James, then, was only with Narcissa as a way to qualify himself, a sort of ‘See, somebody does want me’ deal, when before I just felt that they were truly in love. But, I think the news that Narcissa is engaged comes at the perfect time. I can totally see her parents hurrying to find her a suitable husband because they saw her behavior change (even if they didn’t know because of whom it had changed).

James’s goodbye is so sad. It really pulls at my heartstrings, but of course it’s what must happen. -sigh- Overall, I thought this was wonderfully written, as always, and you did an excellent job with a very rare pairing indeed. Oh, and the title is golden. -squishes-


Author's Response: Whee! I love seeing your reviews, my dear! And I am particularly glad you chose this fic - I am really fond of it, to be honest. :D The beginning was a bit of a challenge when I was writing it - it started off as a more spring-ish scene, but developed eventually into what you see. So it's great that you like it! When I first saw the pairing I was a little thrown off balance too, but something about it has this rather special quality. I'd like to think having an older woman controlling him would be a bit of a change for James! The thing with their love is, and I guess this wasn't portrayed as much as I'd hoped, it's very simple and almost child-like: they trust and love being around each other, but it's not the I-want-to-be-with-you-forever love. By James' bold proclamation of it, I wanted to show his slight naivety compared to Narcissa's more cautious "I think...", hilighting her slight maturity and the difference in their characters. Yes, the whole Lily situation...well, the way I thought whilst writing it was that James was infatuated with Lily when he met Narcissa, and all that happened with her took him completely by surprise. He loves Narcissa in that simplistic way now, and knowing that, he can hold his head up high when he returns to Hogwarts and he won't have to grovel to Lily anymore, because he's found someone else. Looking back, I do think that the concept of that wasn't really expressed very well, so I may have to do a bit of editing! You're spot on with Narcissa's parents - they've noticed a change, and she's getting on a bit now, so they deal with it quickly. [Evil people!] I did love writing James' feelings right at the end, because they were so powerful and he would clearly be devastated to have it end so suddenly. Thank you ever so much for your lovely review! I do love new inputs on my more secretive stories. And I rather like the title myself. Hee! *loves upon and squishes*

Reviewer: GreyLady
Date: 08/15/07 13:35
Chapter: Shadows

I enjoyed this one-shot. I don't think I've ever read a James/Narcissa before, and you pulled it off well.

It makes sense that they would be lovers; they're both Purebloods and self-centered, in their own ways. Your characterization was good. I could see Narcissa savoring the power she has over him, and James being impatient. It was reminiscent of Spinner's End when she became desperate, clingy, and weepy.

I liked the opening imagery as well. It gave a very definite sense of setting and mood. Summer is such a breathless, strange time that it seems somehow fitting that James and Narcissa would take leave of their senses and become romantically involved in the summertime, because I have a difficult time imagining how they would otherwise. James was incredibly prejudiced about Slytherins and Narcissa no doubt had been trained to hate his guts because he associated with Sirius, the black sheep of the family. It's not a plausible pairing, but then again, most fanon pairings aren't. "A small breeze rippled her dress as it passed, and she held it down firmly, knowing that later on it would be lifted once more, but with increased purpose. She giggled childishly at this thought, and upon hearing approaching footsteps, lifted her head to smile blissfully at the oncoming figure." I think that amusing, childish line won me over to this story. It really captures the kind of relationship that James and Narcissa had: playful and untouched by the outside world. Another line that caught my attention was, "It was a beautiful evening — so calm and clear, like many others that had preceded it." As soon as I read that it made me think that she had been in that exact same pose for many nights previously, and consequently really "set up" their relationship for me. I don't know if that was intentional, but I like the effect.

Some parts of the story could have been better. In the beginning of the second half of the story it seemed a little melodramatic; that James wanted to "save" her, that she helped him get over his rejections by Lily. If he really loved her, Lily wouldn't be an issue. The last line also didn't completely ring true to me. It's a nice one, but perhaps something that tied into an earlier aspect of the story would have brought a better sense of closure.

However...great work. This is a very unique and interesting one-shot.

P.S. I love the title. =)

Author's Response: First of all, thank you! When I was challenged to write this, I found it so difficult to think of how the pairing would even be possible, so I'm glad to hear you liked the way I wrote it! I originally planned this story to be set in spring, but soon realised that it would be nearly impossible to have their relationship in school. Plus, as you have mentioned, the kind of distance from "real life" that sumemr brings helped make the couple seem more realistic. I'm pleased that you picked up on the fact that I was suggesting an all-summer romance, and therefore they were a more - advanced couple, shall we say? It also makes it more of a breakup at the end if they had been dating for some time, and of course the breakup was a very main part of the plot. I recognise what you're saying about the seconds part of the story - reading it over again, I'm not sure I'm completely happy with it. The only thing I will say, though, is that when James says he loves Narcissa, I imagine it is an almost childish view of love: he feels special and wanted, and he loves being around Narcissa, and that's what he thinks love is about at this stage. I thought that the end of the story fitted in quite well with canon in the end - James is forced to grow up and realise that not everything can last forever, and what he thought was love could never really be. Therefore, when he returns for his final year at Hogwarts, he's more mature and ready to wait for Lily. Anyway...enough of my rambling! Thank you very much for this lovely review! And I rather like the title, too. ;)

Reviewer: DracosBaby_232
Date: 08/15/07 8:28
Chapter: Shadows

This is so sad! Not a pairing I would have picked but whatever floats your boat.

Author's Response: It was great to experiment with these two, I must say!

Reviewer: Madam Puddifoot
Date: 08/13/07 11:30
Chapter: Shadows

Three words.

Oh. My. God.

That was amazing and really beautifully written - had me spellbound.

Author's Response: Thank you very much! I'm thrilled thought you felt this way.

Author's Response: *I'm thrilled at the thought you felt this way. [Too overcited, me!]

Reviewer: tuttifrutty
Date: 08/11/07 19:42
Chapter: Shadows

snifsnif Great Story!

Author's Response: Thank you!

Reviewer: Gin_Drinka
Date: 08/09/07 17:18
Chapter: Shadows

Wow. INtense. So sad too. But very good. What a pairing! It was wonderfully written.

Author's Response: Thank you very much - I'm really glad you enjoyed it! A very different sort of couple, yes, but it's all possible!

Reviewer: Katie616
Date: 07/15/07 15:50
Chapter: Shadows

Oh. My. God.
That was the best ever. That was the most, I don't know how to say it, exciting story ever. It had my heart beating so fast the whole time! oh my gosh! I could never, ever, write something that good. And I'm not trying to put myself down. I'm just stating the obvious. That was the best, most descriptive story I think I have ever read.

Author's Response: Thank you ever so much for your lovely words. I'm sure I don't quite deserve them, but they're lovely to hear! I'm really happy that you enjoyed the descriptions and really felt with the characters.

Reviewer: R_Ravenclaw
Date: 07/15/07 14:29
Chapter: Shadows

Very strange pairing, but it was really good!

Author's Response: Thank you very much! I like experimenting with pairings.

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