Since you’re leaving SPEW, Jen, I thought it fitting to leave you a review, as a goodbye present. *sobs*
I am a canon girl through and through, so I was delighted to find a Teddy/Victoire story on your page. I, like most other fans, have always wanted to know how Teddy and Victoire got together, after hearing about James II jabbering about it to Harry and Ginny. Needless to say, I absolutely adored your take on it. I loved the prompt, climbing trees, and how you used that prompt to write something very sweet and believable and romantic. I loved how the story began and ended (pretty much) with the tree, and how much time you covered in what is, in actual fact, a rather short oneshot.
I thought the story flowed incredibly well; at no point was it choppy and it never dragged. You moved on from when Teddy was young through to his (and Victoire’s) Hogwarts years, and then to post-Hogwarts, and I loved how you lingered on certain moments of those years. It wasn’t rushed and the conversation at the end, with Teddy and Victoire, was very sweet, yet real as well. It made me happy to know that a story can be sweet and realistic — it’s quite a rare occurrence in fanfiction.
As always, your style is simply flawless. I couldn’t stop any grammar or spelling errors, although something to think about is the use of the word “graduated”. I’m Britpicking here — in Britain, you only graduate when you’ve left university. It was probably the only thing that I thought could use changing, purely for accuracy, but it in no way detracted the fabulousness of this story, rest assured.
Another thing I loved about the style was that it was simplistic and easy to read — and I especially loved the ending. I can definitely imagine Albus spying on them, as well, and I thought his characterisation was spot on, as was Teddy’s and Victoire’s. Teddy had his own character, as opposed to being the cardboard cut-out of Remus or Tonks, and I really liked that. Albus’s, ‘Kiss her!’ was simply adorable, and smelled suspiciously of George — I bet he inherited that from him.
The plot, like the style, was simple, but very effective. I can really see how Teddy and Victoire might have promised each other and been reassured by the fact that they could see each other every day, and actually just have drifted apart. You told the story marvellously, and I loved how you described the way their separation began and developed into complete ignorance of each other, especially in this line:
At first they would stop and say hello. Then that drifted into smiles and nods, until finally there was just ignorance.
To finish, I’d just like to say that if this was included in DH before the epilogue, I would be more satisfied with the book, because you took a pairing that we didn't know much about and told a compelling story which I adored. Thank you for writing such a lovely story. I shall miss you, Jen, but at least we still have LJ.
Sweet! I love it. Teddy sounds exactly like I imagine him. Teddy/Victiore is one of my favorite pairings. There aren't enough of them, but I think this is my favorite so far. :)
This is a celebratory review – you’re a mod now! Congrats! :)
I’ve always been intrigued by Teddy/Victoire, but I’ve never really read much of them. They way you wrote them, though, is almost exactly like I imagine it would be. They would be best friends, of course, when they were younger.
She never tired of pulling herself up through the leaves, branch by branch, and getting scratched endlessly by stray twigs.
He never did, either.
I love how you captured their friendship in these three lines. You get a sense of Victoire. She’s strong, independent, and does what she wants, not what everyone else is doing. And you get a sense of Teddy. You can tell, from these two lines alone, that Teddy is only climbing the tree because of Victoire. And that’s just uber sweet and adorable. :)
And then, at Hogwarts, they slowly grow apart. Not out of a conscious decision, but because things simply work out that way. The progression of this change is beautiful. In my mind, I can see a montage of scenes in the hallway, with them growing older each time they pass each other, and the enthusiasm slowly being lost from their greetings.
Teddy graduates, goes “home” for the summer, and viola – Victoire’s there. And she’s funny, interesting, clever. And beautiful. And Teddy realizes how much he’s lost by letting go of her friendship.
The way you introduced the idea of him regretting losing Victoire, the slow and subtle way you indicate that Teddy might feel more than just friendship, is wonderful. In fact, I think that’s my favorite part of this story. I love how it’s slow and steady and everything makes sense and seems real. He’s not just going to admit to himself that he likes her and he isn’t going to suddenly be like “OMG VICTOIRE I LOVE HER.” It’s going to take him awhile - Over the next few days - and it’s going to be subtle - For the first time, it hurt a little.
The progression of this story just seems so real and so natural; it has to be happening to someone out there. I really enjoyed it. Fantastic story, love.
Another beautiful story. Now that i really started looking I realized i've read soem of your stories before. They are all quite good. keep it up.
Wow! I really enjoyed that write more!!!!
Oh, Jen, this really is such a lovely story.
It really begins like a fairytale. It has a beautiful opening, and as we proceed further into the story, you get the sense that this is a love story that will work out. Which, on occasion, is really nice. And, I like the way you captured that feeling and, really, held it through the entire story.
The writing itself in this one-shot is really wonderful. It flows warmly and gently, and feels incredibly natural. The passage of time is also shown very nicely, very fluidly. I like the way everything just feels right, down to little touches such as ... passing every subject (although Charms was a close call). That's a technique I absolutely adore in writing, because it makes the story seem so real. There are little details that aren't "important", but attribute a depth to the fictional world you've created. Also, from the same paragraph, I liked to mention of Tonks having been an Auror. A lovely, bittersweet addition.
The description of their fading relationship – it's so sad, but so real. It's something that happens in life, especially when it comes to school. The description of how it lessens over time is written just aptly, I imagine most reader's would automatically recognise the process as something that simply happens.
Of course, when two people become distanced by life (rather than by who they become) in the way that Teddy and Victoire do in this story, I believe it also falls back into place just as naturally, and I like how you depicted that in this story. With one snap of a branch against Teddy's face, everything is as it was – and better. ♥
Victoire = beautiful. Just, I love the way you describe her, as a child, and as a young woman. I can see her so vividly in my mind as both, and I can just feel Teddy's emotion towards her. It's really all a result of how warm and natural the prose of this story is, how instinctively I see your descriptions, as though they're paintings of real people and places rather than words of someone trying to invent something beautiful, leaving the reader behind to try and imagine it. The descriptions are not superfluous, but subtle and fitting and totally organic. *sighs* it's lovely. (And I love pretty girls with pale hair! >.> )
Once again, this is really a genuinely, sincerely lovely story. I appreciate that it's warm without being fluffy, that you can really get a sense of love and friendship from it. I'm not always one for simple, happy romances, but it's really because they're usually so full of sugar and clichés that I don't believe in it. But this is really, truly beautiful :)
Author's Response: Thank you so much for the wonderful review, Jenna. Everything you've said just made me smile till my cheeks hurt - I put a lot of thought into writing this. It's not my usual style, either, so to hear that I did a good job is a relief. :) Just - thanks again for such a positive, heartwarming review. You've made me completely proud of this fic. *hugs*
Yay! Victoire and Teddy! You don't see a lot of these fictions. I am however determined to write one eventually. And of course now Victoire is going to love to climb trees so thanks a lot. I probably shouldn't read these or my characters will be shaped for me. Sigh, of course I still need to finish naming the teachers. Anway cute little Romance thinger. Keep writing.
Author's Response: Thank you muchly, my dear! And good luck with your fic. ^_^
Aw, Jen, this was so unbelievably sweet. I’ve recently developed a liking for Teddy and the Teddy/Victoire pairing and this fic was a wonderful example. The thing that struck me most as I was reading was that this felt so real all the way through. There were moments, such as this one: At first they would stop and say hello. Then that drifted into smiles and nods, until finally there was just ignorance. And it was over that I could relate to so completely because I’ve experienced exactly the same thing and it is a perfect description of how it happens.
This part: Then there was the fact that Victoire was a girl, something he wouldn’t have minded if it weren’t for his fellow Gryffindor boys. also jumped out at me as being very real and I felt it showed a real awareness of the characters’ ages. My experience of being twelve (several years ago) and having a twelve-year-old brother is that there is certainly a separation between girls and boys and I’m glad that you showed this and that it would have caused problems in Teddy and Victoire’s friendship, as opposed to so many fics in which characters fall in love the instant they step on the train.
Your characterisation is really excellent, and I loved Teddy’s gradual realisation of his feelings for Victoire, which was summed up particularly well in this part: She was funny, interesting, clever. And beautiful. How had he not noticed that, in all those years passing her in halls? I love how his realisation of his attraction to her crept up on him so subtly that he didn’t even notice it happening until that one link. The build up to the relationship seemed very natural and not forced or unrealistic – I found it very believable.
I loved that you used Harry and Ginny’s as the setting for a great deal of the story - Harry and Ginny were babysitting, like always - I thought it was great that you used Harry and Ginny almost to replace Molly and Arthur, having their house become the central hub for the children rather than The Burrow – I can really imagine that happening and it was a sweet addition.
I loved the style of your writing. You created a really nice story around the focus of the relationship. I liked the little additions to the story such as here - Teddy graduated, passing every subject (although Charms was a close call) because even though it was not directly related to the relationship, which was the main focus of the story, it really added to the overall feel and the development of the characters.
I do have a nit-pick to point out with this line: He was at that age where all girls supposedly had cooties. Cooties is, well usually I’d say an Americanism but you’re Australian so I’ll settle with saying it’s not British. While I understand the meaning through American TV programmes, it’s not something that is used in Britain itself.
I also felt that the repetition of the ‘but it changed’ in this line, But it changed. He didn’t notice at first, but it changed, didn’t quite work as it didn’t flow as well as the rest of the story.
Finally, I had a question about this part: He spent time with his grandparents. I wasn’t sure if you were referring to both his sets of grandparents as the Lupins have never been brought up before in canon, but if you were referring to just the Tonks side of the family then it shouldn’t have been a plural as Ted Tonks died in DH. However, I did consider that you could have meant the Lupins as well – I just wasn’t sure.
All in all, this was wonderful and really enjoyable to read.
Author's Response: *grins* Oh, what a truly wonderful review, Hannah! I am so flattered by this. I am so pleased that you liked this - it just fills me with so much pride.I apologise for the cooties and grandparents things - the first I didn't realise wasn't British, and the second was just a slip of the mind, I did only mean Andromeda. ;) I'll fix those straightaway. Thank you again for such a lovely review! *hugs*
That is so touching
Author's Response: Thank you, my dear. I'm truly flattered.
I read this a while ago on spewswap, Jen, and I’m sorry I didn’t comment but this really did make me smile (at a time when I needed to!).
This was a lovely, lovely little fic. You guide us through Teddy’s happy memories with simple, nostalgic prose, then capture the way friends can drift apart, and the moments that can make you realise you miss someone and you’ve missed out on their friendship. And, of course, the ending is plain and perfect.
I love the tiny touches you added to bring Victoire to life: “wispy”, “breezed in, talking at a hundred miles an hour”, “a long leg and a shimmer of blonde hair”. The way these little things are dotted through the story builds up her character slowly. I also like that she has plenty of Weasleyness in her – being outdoorsy and adventurous, not haughty and cold.
He passed Victoire in the halls every now and then. At first they would stop and say hello. Then that drifted into smiles and nods, until finally there was just ignorance. And it was over.
I can relate… that’s exactly what happens. Poor Teddy and Victoire L I love how you wrote this: no fights or dramas, just drifting apart until “it was over.”
And then, when he saw her again and ‘really looked at her for the first time in years’…
She caught him watching her, and their eyes locked. Only for a second. But that one second was perfectly long enough to bring the memories flooding back from where he had locked them all those years ago. The smell of the tall pine trees. The feel of his sticky hands after eating watermelon. The sound of her laugh. The view from the treetops, and how they had thought they could see to the end of the world.
Then she looked away, and the moment was gone. With a quick goodbye to Harry, Victoire was gone as well, out the door and back into her life. The life that he was no longer a part of; the life that he hadn’t been a part of for seven years.
Like Carole, I just adore that passage. It was like time froze, was suspended, for that moment as all those details rushed in to Teddy’s – and the reader’s – mind. And you wove in different senses, which was just perfect to conjure the scene in my head.
But any obstacle could be overcome, even seven-year silences.
Again, this really touched me: I believe that long periods apart don’t prevent relationships with the most important people in our lives being rebuilt. If that makes sense >.>
What are you waiting for?’ Albus called up to Teddy. ‘Kiss her!’
And so he did.
afjkhdfa;aaaaawwww! Just a simple, charming ending to a simple, charming fic. The whole thing is nicely non-fluffy: it’s more about their friendship and shared happy memories than romance. I LOVE IT. [/caps lock, sorry *hides*] But I mean, this part here could just as easily be the end of the fic… the kiss is a lovely little bonus (:D) :
She smiled. ‘Best friends forever, right?’
She took his hand in her own, squeezing it tightly. He felt a warmth spread throughout his body, and a broad smile crossed his face. It felt as if everything were right again. Then he checked himself. He was sitting in a tree, holding hands with Victoire. Of course everything was right.
Just a couple of typos to point out, and then I’ll be on my way…
Soon Teddy turned eleven, and he couldn’t fall out of trees everyday anymore.
everyday => every day
Teddy waited a week, spending all his spare time at the Potters house.
Potters => Potters’
But all in all, a delightful little fic. I like the way you do next-gen, Jen, making the kids a nice blend of their parents yet clearly unique human beings, and putting them into scenarios which make for lovely stories :)
Author's Response: :) Thank you, Chels. What an amazing review. I am so glad you enjoyed it (and never mind not commenting on spewswap; this is much better!) Yay that you like my description! This is a different style to what I usually write, and description in this was really getting to me. >.< As with the ending, when I was writing it I almost left that part out - like you pointed out, I wanted it to be more about their friendship than the romance. But the song I was listening to (something by Fall Out Boy, I can't remember the title) has "What are you waiting for? Kiss her" in the lyrics, and it just seemed fitting. :) I'll go and fix those typos right now. *hugs* Thanks again for the review!
Oh, Jenny. This is utterly, utterly beautiful. I adore the way you've portrayed these two. Victoire as a fearless child not bothered by the scratches on her arms (seems very Weasley, although perhaps that's unfair to Fleur) and Teddy so fiercely protective like his father.
Your idea about how they drifted apart when they both went to Hogwarts is totally believeable and makes their eventual reconciliation all the more realistic.
My favourite moment, in a fic full of perfect moments, is this She caught him watching her, and their eyes locked. Only for a second. But that one second was perfectly long enough to bring the memories flooding back from where he had locked them all those years ago. The smell of the tall pine trees. The feel of his sticky hands after eating watermelon. The sound of her laugh. The view from the treetops, and how they had thought they could see to the end of the world. Wonderful!
Hmm, I can't do SPEW-style reviews, I just wanted to comment and leave you some well-deserved gushing praise. Carole xxx
Author's Response: This review was truly what I needed right now, Carole. :) Thank you so, so much. I'm really proud of this fic - it's the first Teddy/Victoire I've written, and it gave me an obsession with the pairing, haha. The section you pointed out is one of my favourites, too. I am just so glad you enjoyed it, and so grateful for your review. Thanks again, dear.