What struck me the most in this chapter was the absurdity of the Dursleys trying to get DudleIy into an institution of higher learning. I was really pleased with how the Golden Trio negotiated their 7th year. Although, I have a feeling that McGonagall got exactly what she wanted too. Great chapter.
Author's Response: Petunia and Vernon have never really acknowledged the true Dudley Ė theyíre too busy looking at him through rose-colored glasses. I imagine Dudley finally realizing this and throwing it in their faces as he storms out with five rooms worth of belongings. I see a lot a psychiatry bills in that boyís future.
McGonagall is that sweet and crafty grandmotherly type, at least thatís how I always envisioned her. Hogwarts will definitely feel different under her leadership, yet she will have retained Dumbledoreís spirit.
So you're keeping Kreacher's companion a mystery?:) I take it Harry was able to grab some of Kreacher's "treasures." It's too bad they had to leave the alarm behind but Hermione's plan to write up their "field test findings" was genius. This seems to be a little different style of writing for you compared to the last book I read. I'm enjoying it just the same. Great chapter.
Author's Response: Unfortunately, the identity of Kreacherís companion is part of a rather startling revelation Ė so itís not something I can answer right now. Itís something that Harry will learn in a rather unexpected way.
This story uses the previous HP books as its template, so itís almost entirely told from Harryís point of view. That creates a slower pace when it comes to revelations, but just enjoy the ride. Donít let Harryís wide-eyed innocence fool you, though; this is a complicated story full of subplots, hidden agendas, an overabundance of clues (which will turn out to be the red herrings?), and all the plot devices youíve come to expect from JKRís arsenal.
Thereís no doubt that Harryís narration is not as introspective or poetic as Remusí Ė he has a lot less baggage, for one thing. Yet he will slowly learn to grapple with some pretty heavy matters as the story progresses.
But who is with Kreacher? Mundungus? I felt sad reading about how much of a wreck Grimmauld Place had become. I guess I'm kind of surprised that no one's been back to Grimmauld Place since Sirius died. I kind of hope they can get it cleaned up again. It's always such a shame and a loss when old houses are left to the elements. I'm excited to start this new book. So far, so good.
Author's Response: I think youíll really be pleased with what happens to the houses eventually (yes, thatís a plural on purpose). However, you will have to wait until the sequel, The Dark Phoenix, to find out. (Thatís the one Iíve got about ĺ of the way finished and ľ of the way posted.)
For now, let Grimmauld Place live up to its name just as it symbolizes the unkempt feelings which Harryís been shoving under the rug. How he comes to terms with that is a major part of this story. After all, this is a tale of his growing into adulthood as well.
OMG, I WAS SO HAPPY...now I'm slightly depressed- its so much easier to believe that Tonks and Lupin didn't die...
Author's Response: I quite agree! I really wanted a happy ending, too, but DH made that impossible. Blame my compulsive need to adhere (somewhat) to canon. I can seek to rectify the wrongs, but canít change reality, unfortunately.
There is no doubt that the Harry that we see in the epilogue is a fundamentally different character than the one who appears in the remainder of the story. Think of it as AU-Harry versus post-DH Harry. It was my intent that readers recognize Harryís closing angst as being so much like our own: we, who seek out new stories to read or write so that our cherished characters can live on. In making that Harry echo our own feelings of loss, it strengthens the bonds that we feel with the character, the little bit of ourselves that we all see in Harry and which had endeared him the world over.
If anything, the reviews concerning the twist in the epilogue have confirmed that readers, too, share my sense of loss and outrage (and all those other stages of grief) for many of the characters who were dispatched in DH. Some were not even deemed important enough to be given a death scene. Luckily, fan fiction is not like real life (reality is aÖ witchÖ isnít it?) and although I may have accepted JKRís plot decisions intellectually, I find the characters still haunt my imagination, refusing to be dead and buried as long as someone is still willing to take up a quill, or pen, or keyboard.
So donít despair. Remus and Tonks live on in our imagination and in my sequel, The Dark Phoenix. The first chapter sets the stage by exploring the post-DH Harry, so if you find that too dark for your tastes, I promise I wonít be offended if you just jump right in to the AU part of the story which begins with chapter 2. The tone is playful, but hopefully manages to avoid fluffiness.
I loved this entire story but this epilogue completely shocked me! It was very out of place with the rest of the story and I felt it was very random. When did all these people die??? You did not explain that at all. Also I believe that Harry has a better grip on reality than to write essentially a fairytale for Teddy. I believe he would tell him the story of his parents but I do not think Harry would embellish or exaggerate until it is basically not true!
I loved the rest of the story however and I look forward to reading more
Author's Response: I apologize for the confusion caused by not labeling the epilogue very clearly from the start. It is not really the next chapter in the story, but rather a bookend of sorts that puts everything into context of the canon universe. As such, the tone is intentionally different as we are entering a different realm. In many ways, it is intended to underline my own reaction to the cavalier way in which the death count has accumulated throughout the canon series. At some point, itís going to have an impact on Harry Ė heís not a heartless brute after all. But donít be so hard on him, heís trying to cope in a positive manner. I thought it important to illustrate that the Harry Potter we see at the end of Deathly Hollows is not set up for a happily ever after ending, that there are going to be many issues that will haunt him in the years to come. It makes him a more mature, layered character as I hope to demonstrate in the sequel. Please give the sequel a chance. I will begin submitting it next week.
Now there's a twist I wasn't expecting. I do like the idea of Harry wanting a fairytale type version of Remus and Tonks for Teddy. Excellent job.
The sequel you mentioned will be from canon standpoint or from Harry's story for Teddy? I'm quite sure I'll like it either way.
Author's Response: Thanks for all your support along the way. Believe it or not, the sequel will comply with both canon and this separate reality. I promise to submit the first chapter in about a month's time.
So…I haven't read the chapter yet. I was very happy when I saw that Mugglenet said it wasn't complete. But then I saw the chapter title was "Epilogue." Bittersweet.
And then you really and truly shocked me more than you ever have this entire story. I'm mean, jaw-dropping - my husband asked me if something was wrong.
I admit, I was slightly confused, and I had to read it again before it sank in. I really enjoyed your tale thoroughly…partially because of the fact that Lupin and Tonks relationship with each other and with Harry was able to be fully developed. I think I would have preferred the story without the epilogue rather than come to terms with another story that shockingly takes away beloved characters, in addition to having a Harry that creates another reality to cope with his grief. Though I like the tenderness between him and Ginny.
I know you are writing a sequel, and that it features Snape and Lupin, so is it non-epilogue compliant with your story?
Overall, I'm extremely impressed with your writing and this story, as well as your dedication to it and your obvious love for the series. It was a joy and a pleasure to read, and now that I won't be checking for updates for this series, I will go check out your other story. Best of luck on writing the sequel, I look forward to seeing it posted in the future!
Author's Response: I apologize for the confusion caused by my unfamiliarity with the options when submitting my chapters. I have since figured out that I can omit the chapter number entirely, so that the epilogue stands out more clearly. Hopefully that and the spoiler warning at the start will clarify things a bit. But it is intended to be a splash of cold water that brings the reader back to reality. As much as I would like to, I cannot change how JKR decided to sacrifice characters so blithely in her final volume. But donít be so hard on Harry; heís just trying to cope with the loss by indulging in a bit of fan fiction himself. It is intended to echo what we are doing on this site, a subtle homage as such. Harry as everyman is us as well. The sequel is coming along nicely, growing exponentially in all directions like a tasty tale should. It acknowledges my epilogue as the starting point and will give you a bit more background on why I had Harry react the way that he did. Other characters included are Ron & Hermione (obviously, with some couple time that will please fans), Mundungus, Mrs. Figg, Luna & Neville, Percy Weasley, Penelope Clearwater, Mr. Ollivander, Tonks & her offspring, Bill & Fleur and their offspring, all the other Weasleys, and original characters introduced in the previous two installments. A few scenes will take place at Hogwarts, but for the most part we are following the story of those who are no longer students. Thanks for your undying support and compliments to keep me going in the void of cyberspace. Look for new story to start posting within the next few weeks.
I have enjoyed reading your story and I think that it has been really well done. Though I would make a suggestion. The story had a great flow from chapter one to chapter 72. But when you included the Epilouge it had a jarring effect that negated the rest of the story. I would suggest that you include a prolouge that has the image of Harry coming into a room and sitting down at a desk to begin his tale. Then I believe that you could tie in this chapter much more smoothly. Otherwise people will ask "When did Remus, Tonks, and Fred die? It was not part of your story."
Author's Response: I suppose it all comes down to whether you like a thought provoking twist at the end of a tale or not. Obviously, I do. I confess that I forgot to add a note about DH,/i> spoilers in my author's prenote before the sequel which would help considerably. (I have since correct this thanks to your insightful words.) You'll be pleased that the sequel starts and ends in much the same way you suggested. Sometimes we are on the same wavelength, it appears.
So...my review for this chapter probably seemed weird...I was typing in Word and then copying it over and not all of it made it over and I didn't notice. Thankfully I was able to recover it, so here is the review I meant to leave:
I've been reviewing your story for many chapters now, and so sometimes I don't say some things that are prevalent in all chapters. But I felt the need to point out certain things in this one. Like your ability to write descriptive sentences, for example, without becoming overwhelming. "Dark clouds scuttled like phantoms on the horizon, vying for the privilege of orchestrating the nest deluge." "Cobwebs dangled like baroque lace from the arms of the simple candelabra whose candles had long since expired, leaving small pools of brackish wax on the underlying mat." Beautiful sentences such as these are scattered throughout your work and they paint such a wonderful picture, making your writing almost poetic while still being prose.
It's been a few weeks since I read the last chapter, and I completely forgot that Remus was still in his other form, I was so confused in the beginning, and then I was like, "Yes!"
I like that Harry seems to have embraced his destiny in these past few chapters. His time with Remus in the past year has definitely made him more confident. He has always been a leader, someone that people are drawn to, but now he's embracing it, willingly giving orders, rather than fighting it, and putting his trust in those he's giving the orders to, not always thinking he has to do everything himself.
I really enjoyed the interactions between Hermione and Remus (and Hermione and Ron, *sigh*, he is too sweet) this chapter. I just love love love your Remus, have I mentioned that before? :) And 'Bellatonks' made me giggle.
OMG!moment with Harry and his scar - I had like 12 questions, but I waited to ask until I finished the chapter, lol. But then when he Apparated into the room with them!! I think I gasped out loud. And then when Remus wanted to send her a Patronus, I was yelling at my computer, he'll ruin everything! The chapter got intense the more I read it. Thank goodness for McGonagall.
My respect for Pomfrey when up tenfold when she and Lupin were discussing the Patronus, though, and my sentiments were with Hermione: "Hermione had never before seen Lupin literally at a loss for words. It was actually rather amusing, if one disregarded the circumstances."
Author's Response: Thank you for all the glowing compliments. Glad you like my spare, yet poetic wordings (credit F. Scott Fitzgerald and lots of editing on my part). From the start, I was struck with the similarities between Remusí rejection of Tonks and Harryís break up with Ginny. On the surface, they seem quite different as Remusí overt reasons (werewolf) and Harryís (hero complex) seem so different. Yet underneath it all, they are both afraid to lose control by giving in to their true feelings. Both fooling themselves into thinking that the overriding reason is an unselfish desire to protect another. (Tonks and Ginny see through this and it makes them both mad.) In his subtle way, Remus draws the parallel when he tells Harry that taking the leap with Tonks literally changed his own life. He is then supportive when Harry tries to untangle the mess he made with Ginny. Once he stops fighting with himself on the inside, Harry can turn his attention to his destiny without being conflicted. So pleased you like my Remus. He has turned out to be my favorite character; so much so that I wrote a Remus-centric fic that can be accessed via my authorís page. Itís told with his unique inner voice as he tries to come to terms with his own demons. His descriptions are bit more elaborate, but he has that poetic side of him that likes to read Milton. Unlike the stories in canon, though, my version of Remusí lost year shows the majority of his interactions with other adults, not to mention some revealing confrontations between Dumbledore, McGonagall and Snape (my second favorite) that occur behind the scenes. Tonks is naturally winsome and brings out the inner joy that Remusí condition has tried to stamp out, but she is clearly not as immature as she is often portrayed. But to give credit where credit is due, my take on Remus was greatly inspired by the great actor who has stepped into his shoes and the photos Iíve seen of him laughing unabashedly. Sorry, if this seems like Iím trying to sell you another product, but itís been rather disappointing that not very many people on Mugglenet have discovered that other story (and, yes, itís complete). Thanks so much for taking the time to describe how you dealt with the intensity of the chapter. Nothing worse than a confrontation that fizzles out and its satisfying to know that my tale delivers an enjoyable punch.
Oh, I almost left a note in the last chapter about Percy…and happily he turned out alright!
Harry's thought made me giggle, and was one of my favorite parts: "Just wait until the Minister discovered Hermione aspired to the Department for the Control and Regulation of Magical Creatures, Harry smiled inwardly. He might rethink his appointment once she started reshaping the laws dealing with goblins, elves, and werewolves."
I really liked this chapter. I feel like everything's coming to an end, and I'm sad about it! The mood of the story has changed slightly, obviously, but it still maintains the same…feeling? Structure? As before. If that makes sense. And I really liked the ending to this chapter. Very mischievous, it made me smile.
Author's Response: Yes, everyone gets their comeuppance, even the Minister. As for Harry and Remus, they move on to peacetime projects. I, too, feel rather sad that things are winding down. But I promise you there will be a sequel with more Remus and more of Snapeís scathing gallows humor.
Oooohhh, I hope they find a little rat skeleton clinging to a rock, having slowly…*cough, ahem!* Sorry, got carried away there. I can't believe he's still alive! Grrrr. But he's all alone, and Peter is the sort of person who seems to need somebody…he needed to shelter of the Weasley family, and then he needed Voldemort, so I don't know how well he'll do on his own.
I love how they bullied the Minister!
Author's Response: Wormtail is definitely a goner. Whoís going to rescue or shelter him this time? The integrity of the Fidelius Charm hiding the Potter estate is directly tied to the ratís fate so Hagridís declaration in the next chapter will tell you all you need to know. Manipulating adults is what Hermione does best Ė and Ron is more than happy to give her the opening.
Wow. What a chapter. Thankfully I take notes as I go or that's as eloquent a review as you'd get on this one, lol.
My heart went out to Remus, I cannot imagine how he must have felt being stuck there, unable to help Harry in this of all moments after the way their relationship has progressed this year. "Haunted" is a great description. But I thought it was really unfair not to let Ron and Hermione go! It's like…fate! They, of all people, have been there with him from the very very beginning and should be the ones at his side at the end! Of all the people, even over Ginny, Harry would feel the strength and love and support from them to face Voldemort. I would have thought they would have fought back more as well, especially with both Pompfrey and McGonagall there.
But speaking of Harry, his opening line to Voldemort about tying balloons to the mailbox was awesome.
I really enjoyed seeing Harry spar with Voldemort, apply his training - Remus would have been so proud! *tear*
The paragraph of Harry, describing how time felt during the battle before he brought up Dumbledore…that was fantastic. And Harry's pretty much a genius.
I was shocked when Draco came out of the wand! Was he more knowledgeable about such matters because of his prior experience with Voldemort before he died, or because he has "passed over"? I wouldn't have thought he'd have known such things when he was alive.
Oooohhh, trust Nagini to be as evil as Voldemort. Always an evil cliffie here at the end!
Author's Response: Harry does not anticipate that it will take Ron and Hermione so long to retrieve Remus Ė after all, he wants Remus at his side for the final battle. That is what they have been working towards for most of the past year. However, life has a tendency to throw curve balls and everyoneís mettle gets tested in a different way. It is a testament to how important Remus is to him that he sends his most trusted, and proven, cohorts. As for Ron and Hermione not fighting to join Harry, it might have easily caused a fatal distraction. They may not be happy with McGonagallís restrictions in the cave, but they recognize the wisdom of her advice -- she is after all, also a member of the Order. But as you saw, just because Remus isnít there in body, he is certainly there in spirit. And Harry is most definitely channeling his inner Marauder when he suggests the balloons to cause Voldemort to lose his cool early on. Draco knows about Voldemortís abilities because he witnessed them first hand before Voldemort decided to punish him for his failure atop the Astronomy Tower. Even though Snape stepped in to do the deed, would it really be believable for a tyrannical bastard such as Voldemort to forgive Dracoís missteps? Make no mistake about it, even in canon, Snape is royally pissed that he has to step in for Draco. Dracoís fate is intended as a surprise twist, but perhaps not so unexpected. Speaking of everyoneís favorite Potions Master, Snapeís influence is also apparent as it was his brusque assault of Harry in the woods that taught that our reaction to fear (what we would call, adrenaline) can alter the fabric of time.
Hermione had never before seen Lupin literally at a loss for words. It was actually rather amusing, if one disregarded the circumstances.
And as I came to leave this, I see I'm THREE chapters behind! Aaahh!
Author's Response: I always saw Remus as the Marauder whose calm words smoothed things over when they got caught.
Wonderful chapter, perfect scenerio's, and I'm thinking encouragement. I want to see Godric's Hollow through Harry's eyes when he's not killing Voldy. I had forgotten to mention the interesting way you ended it where Jo began it. I knew there was something I had forgotten to mention a couple chapters ago. This is such a great story.
Author's Response: Symmetry is a beautiful thing, is it not? You will definitely see quite a bit of the Potter estate through Harry's eyes in the sequel, Chapter 3, I believe. I plan to start submitting that after the end of the dust settles on this one (which is much closer than I ever believed). Your encourgaging words mean a lot to me!
Just keeps getting better. Ron's less than tactful(my favorite kind)comment was perfect. And Hermione to the rescue. Hope the Minister isn't stupid enough to leave Lupin out of the little speech to the students. We still don't know for sure about Wormtail, we're still not sure if the Dark Magic can be totally removed from Remus and Harry. If it can't, does that mean they may both die? I'm thinking you don't write that way, but there's something going on here.
Author's Response: Happy to hear it! Since this project started with the intent of heading in a different direction from JKR, Iíll let you infer from that what you will. Wormtailís condition is directly tied to the Fidelius Charm blocking the Potter estate, so Hagridís announcement in the next chapter should tell you all you need to know.
best chapter EVER
Author's Response: Thank you so much! More surprise to come within the next few days...
Great chapter, but one question: are we going to see Snape again before all of this is over?
Author's Response: He's mentioned. But I just finished a long section tentatively titled "Snape's Soliloquy" for the sequel so I'm promising a number of long scenes, from his POV even, there. Feeling snarky anyone?
Great chapter! The fight/battle was interesting. It was so easy to visualize what was going on and Harry's plan was perfect. Well maybe not quite perfect, since Voldy managed to do some damage of his own. Well written. Still a few unanswered questions to clear up about Wormtail, the Fidelius Charm, whether or not Harry lives, is Voldy totally dead. I will be looking forward to the next chapters.
Author's Response: I was so worried that the climatic battle would be too disjointed with the multiple changes of POV. Thanks for letting me know otherwise. Most of your questions are answered in the following chapter which I just finished submitting. But I canít show you all my cards just yet.
I don't think "a little hairier" quite covers it. Brilliant as usual.
Author's Response: Thanks! Next chapter is ready to be submitter tomorrow and I promise, all hell will break loose in that one!
Brilliant chapter. Great map. Oh shit!
Author's Response: Thanks! It's going to get even hairier (no pun intended, well perhaps it was).