This is my favourite chapter. I would love it if you had a background story on this. Great fic!
Loved this chapter! I agree this was a most important one to read. Well done!
Author's Response: Thank you. I'm glad you value what's important.
Take it and eat it, Malfoy! Take it!!! I really like these stories, I always wondered.
Author's Response: Take, eat and vomit, Lucius! Thank you for writing in.
That was fascinating! Very well done. Your chapter notes definitely got my attention and I'm very glad I read this particular one-shot. You tackled a tough subject in the Potterverse in such a unique but totally believable way. You've not only written a good story, but also made a very pointed commentary on how HP is often perceived by others. The end in particular was very clever. Great job!
Author's Response: Dear Gina, I am so glad I attracted your attention! That penultimate paragraph was the whole point of the story (as well as the whole point of Harry Potter). I did wonder whether it was fair game to refer to "Deathly Hallows" in an in-universe setting; it was only after I'd finished writing that I remembered that "Deathly Hallows" doesn't exist in Lucy's world, so Anna can talk about it as a hypothetical. Thank you for telling me the story wasn't too didactic. And if you ever meet one of Pastor Evald's gang, be sure to insist they read "Deathly Hallows" before you they enter the discussion. Thank you so much for writing in, GhV
Wow. That was, quite honestly, the most realistic and well written piece of fanfiction I have ever read. Each chapter was so well thought out, each character so individual and different, not only in lifestyle but in tone, in accent, in personality. It was as if each story was actually written by the people they were said to have been written by. I have loved every bit of it. Your attention to detail is stunning, your characterization flawless. I don’t read much fanfiction these days, but I noticed this story on the Most Recent list the other day and have been unable to stop reading it during every spare moment since.
Believe me, if I could find the words to praise this fic any higher, I would use them. Thank you for an excellent read.
Author's Response: Dear HB, I am so pleased that you liked my story as much as I did. It is always very flattering to have drawn a reader away from real life or her usual reading tastes. The characters were all alive in my head, and I'm so glad that they survived the transition to paper and lived on in yours! Thank you so much for writing in, GhV
I really appreciated the way that you addressed the issue that so many church leaders have about the Harry Potter series. As a Christian myself, I have many times been annoyed by the anti-Harry Potter fanatics, and how flawed their reasoning is, but the arguments that you bring to the topic are really inspiring. I especially enjoyed the way that you showed the "allegory" as you call it within the Harry Potter books. I had never seen it like that before, but it makes absolute sense. This story really touched me. Thank you.
Author's Response: Dear Secret Hermione, ~ Thanks for writing in. I'm glad I gave you something to think about. I doubt the Pastor Evalds in your life have actually read "Deathly Hallows", but if only they would, that would be the strongest possible argument against their case. ~ To be honest, it took me a long time to pick out the Christian imagery. It was always there: redeeming love' saved by blood; Harry is the "Chosen One" (the English translation of "Messiah"); he says he's not going to overthrow the Carrows (= Roman ) because he's here to do the will of the one who sent him; he meets Voldemort without his wand; he lays down his life... But there was a lot of other imagery there too: alchemy, Greek mythology, Grimms' fairy tales. It wasn't actually until I reached the line that I've quoted at the beginning of this chapter, which is on almost the last page, that I realised that this had been Rowling's chief purpose in writing the whole thing! There are lots of stories about people who sacrifice their lives, but Harry's death actually prevents the slaying of his friends. I had forgotten until he announced it to Voldemort that this was a law of the magical universe. ~ But I'm stupid. Plenty of other people saw it coming all along,: see this interview with commentary http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0708-herald-johnstone.html from as early as 2000 (GoF time). There's also some interesting stuff in this one http://www.accio-quote.org/articles/2000/0700-hottype-solomon.htm, where she won't comment too much on her personal religious beliefs, effectively because going public about them would be a spoiler for Book VII. ~ So I don't think this is controversial. Planting a Christ-figure right in the centre of her plot was absolutely deliberate and she has pretty well admitted that the idea was there from the beginning. You have to admit, Harry is just about the most successful literary Christ-figure since Aslan. ~ Have a good day, GhV
Brilliant! This was great!
Author's Response: Thank you!
I recall you mentioning in a response that there would be 11 chapters... but you haven't ticked the "completed" thing, so I was wondering if there's more?
Anyway. The stories.
Redemption: Once again, this one was totally different, as it didn't deal with a family member discovering magic, and the person who discovered it later had no memory of it. I think you made a great point about how one could still be magical and religious - that they're not mutually exclusive. It's also interesting because I know of some Christian people who refuse to let children read HP because it's supposedly "satanic", which is kind of ironic, because the values presented in the books are all about friendship, love, loyalty, defeating evil etc. Anyway, nice idea, something totally different, and I really liked Lucy. It was interesting that it didn't seem to bother her that she wasn't magical. Also, I know in some of your other stories you've touched on the ethics of Obliviating Muggles, and I thought perhaps you could have explored that a bit more here. Anyway, great story :).
Resources: Here is another great example of your brilliance and your attention to detail - including Muggle history like the miners' strike was really interesting (also I love how everyone comes from such different backgrounds). When the money thing started, I thought it was a bit weird as I thought you were breaking Gramp's Laws of Transfiguration... which seemed weird, as you'd quoted from it at the beginning, so I was glad that you explained that one properly. And you cheated!! The fic wasn't from the perspective of a Muggle at all... not that I mind lol, it was a great story and Louise was an interesting character.
Refutation: I'm so glad you included something about a Squib... this was fantastic! It was hard to read (in a good way) as I knew from the beginning (because of your quote) that Miles would be a Squib and that would be a major problem in his family. I wasn't expecting them to throw him out, though! That was horrendous. Kind of interesting that although some of the Muggles when first exposed to magic acted despicably, none were as bad as the wizards who had a Squib. Interesting. I loved the bit about genetics at the end - it made a lot of sense and the last line was just perfect. I loved how at the beginning, Marcus was telling Miles to make friends with Harry Potter... and then Miles ended up taking Harry's place at school! I also loved your characterisation of Malfoy, Nott and Neville, particularly Neville who was just, so, well... Neville (I can't think of a better way of explaining him, but I thought you nailed the characterisation).
One thing - I'd love it if you wrote a fic about Miles at Stonewall High, and him encountering Dudley or something. It would be fascinating.
There were two lines in this story that I thought were beautiful - There was no point in disillusioning them a minute before I had to. On this, the very last day of my childhood, I would be the son whom my parents expected me to be.. This was so sad, and hints at the fact that even if Miles isn't sent away, he will never really be 'part of the family'. The other one was So the last kind words I had ever heard my father speak had been addressed to Marcus. Now here I really should have picked up that he was going to be kicked out... but I remember thinking it was a little strange, but I didn't really put it together. Anyway, great foreshadowing, I was definitely uneasy about what would happen to him.
I really do hope more stories are coming!!!
Oh by the way, I have two posted stories on a similar theme to these - called "July the twenty-fourth" and "Magic" in case you're interested, though they're definitely not as good as your fics.
Author's Response: Dear Katrina, ~ Put it this way: I wrote 13 stories and I may post the last two eventually. But I wasn’t able to find beta readers for them, and the difference in quality really shows. So I don’t want to post them yet. The missing stories should have been 9th and 10th in the sequence. ~ In “Redemption”, it’s safe to say that Pastor Evald isn’t the important character. It’s a story about Lucy and Terry negotiating their faith through unchartered waters, because they don’t know any adult Christian wizards to help them. There must be some, of course, but Terry hasn’t met them yet. I don’t think Lucy thinks much about the Obliviation ethics. She is only 15 or 16 and she doesn’t like Evald, so she is only focused on what will help Terry and keep her local church sane. ~ The real point of the Harry Potter books is not the “Christian values”, some of which which you’ll actually find in any worthwhile story, but the literary point that Harry himself is a Christ-figure. The book that Lucy describes in the antepenultimate paragraph is, of course, “Deathly Hallows”. It’s a book that can never exist in her universe, but it does in ours, and it’s the best possible answer to the real-life Pastor Evalds. Fortunately there aren’t very many of those in Britain, but I’m told there are a few in America who have never quite shut up! ~ One of the points of writing a series like this is that all the Muggles should indeed come from different backgrounds. Justin is an aristocrat, so Sophie is his opposite, from the underclass of British society. I think the two of them would get along fine in Hufflepuff because they both have a fundamental honesty. ~ To be more precise about Gamp’s Law: the “money” Sophie and Louise produce is leprechaun gold. It doesn’t look quite right and it only lasts a few hours. Because they are desperate, they are able to get it to the Muggle shops before it vanishes, but more than one shop assistant would have had some explaining to do at the end of the day! ~ Yes, I cheated. That’s why this story is placed at the end of the series, after the pattern is set. Louise thought she was a Muggle right up to the time she produced those coins. She was half way to the shop before she remembered that Sophie’s coins are always dated to the current year yet Sophie hadn’t been in the house at any time in the 1992 calendar year so she couldn’t have conjured these particular specimens. After that, Louise began to ask herself what else she might have done but attributed to Sophie, but she kept quiet about her conclusion because she knew that the Hogwarts letter would be the only real proof. ~ I think “Refutation” is actually a very vicious story. I assumed prejudiced wizards would behave worse than prejudiced Muggles because they are not *afraid* of Squibs – they know they have all the power in the situation. I did wonder whether the Flints would really have thrown an 11-year-old out of the house; but the Blacks could be pretty nasty, and I think the Malfoys wouldn’t have hesitated. ~ The point about Miles taking Harry’s place is that Miles is a boy who *should* have been in Harry’s year at Hogwarts but wasn’t. So it was natural to pair him with Neville, the alternative-destiny boy who wasn’t the Chosen One, and who was a loner at Hogwarts because his friend ended up not accompanying him there. I love Neville; anyone who wants to be his friend must be a decent person. ~ Dudley wasn’t at Stonewall because he went to that pretentious private school, but it’s quite plausible that Miles might have met him around Little Whinging. Perhaps Miles and his new friends try to break up a fight or a raid? I wonder if Miles ever met Mrs Figg? There’s certainly potential for a story about Little Whinging in Harry’s absence... ~ Thanks for all your support and for the detail and depth of your reviews. They have really made the writing worthwhile. Best wishes, GhV
This is a great read!
Author's Response: You're welcome.
Brilliant! Well written!
Author's Response: Thank you!
damn. how many times have i heard people saying that Harry Potter is Satanic? you hit the nail on the head alright. awesome story.
Author's Response: I wonder how many of those people have read Deathly Hallows? It isn't exactly a subtle or hidden message...
Hello! I'd just like to say that reading your brilliant pieces has been a right pleasure! You're definitely one hell of a story-teller! :D Love your sensitivity and how delicately you deal with these Muggles. Balancing your own reality with that of the one you love is never easy. Just one question, though! It seems that Terry Boot is Muggle-born in this story. But if he were, it would not have been possible for him to at Hogwarts during the war, unless he lied about his blood status or something!
Author's Response: Thank you for venturing into my little corner of the Potterdom and for liking my stories so much! Yes, I suppose you could say that each of these is a love story. ~ JKR's notes say that Terry was a Muggle-born. Lavender is also apparently a Muggle-born, so I suppose some of the students did indeed fool their way back into Hogwarts in 1997. Lavender probably exploited her very common surname: there must have been some pure-blooded Browns who were willing to pretend she was their granddaughter. I think Terry would have had the initiative to do some research and find out which pure-blooded witches had disposed of an illegitimate child back in 1980 so that he could claim he had only been adopted by Muggles. Since Terry wouldn't tell a direct lie, I can see him making a very complicated speech explaining how he had been born into perdition and rejection but had been adopted into sonship... and the Death Eaters wouldn’t be the kind of people who would realise he was just stating his theology. Lisa Turpin managed to prove a connection with Thorfinn Rowle, but I think the Snatchers caught Kevin Entwhistle and Sophie Roper. Justin Finch-Fletchley would have been able to fly his private helicopter out of Britain before the situation became too serious, but I like to think he flew it back a few times to rescue some of his friends. I must write that story one day! ~ Best wishes, GhV
I absolutely loved this one and all the rest of the too.
Author's Response: Thank yoU!
I just have to review this fic again... All I can say is 'wow'. Such an interesting scenario here - and I love what you conclude at the end - that magic is just an excuse for Derek to blame his problems with Linda on (to be honest, she does sound quite a handful!). I loved the idea that he's gone to see a councillor about it, I also thought it was interesting that you don't use speech marks - any particular reason?
Hmm anyway I'm not sure if this review has made a huge amount of sense... but I absolutely LOVE your work and I thought that this story was really interesting. Keep it up!!!
Author's Response: Thanks for reviewing again, Katrina. Yes, I did mean to suggest that Linda's selfishness was a large part of what was wrong with their marriage, although Derek is so pointedly dull that one wonders if he does it deliberately. I thought speech marks would get in the way of a "stream of consciousness" story. The counsellor isn't really important to the set-up; she's a bit of an interruption to the narrative. And thank you so much for liking a story about characters who have such minimal canon tie-in! For the record, I think Robert Rivers will marry Su Li and take over the management of her parents' Chinese restaurant. His older sister will marry and divorce Roger Davies, remarry into the Fawcetts and keep a little goose-farm (wizards need the feathers to make quills). The younger sister marries into the Macmillans and becomes a bee-keeper. At one time I assumed Derek and Linda would separate, although neither would ever remarry, but now I'm not so sure. I think they might be perfeclty capable of pecking and poking their way through the rest of their lives together.
Thanks for such a long response to my review!!! So here's another one, on the four chapters since I last reviewed.
Resignation: Such excellent characterisation of Hermione! I loved the back story about her mum - how she'd wanted so many children but hadn't been able to - it made the whole story so much more tragic. I think you really picked up on something with Hermione being called a 'freak' at school... it makes me see how she connects so well with Harry (after all, at the beginning of PoS, it's Ron who really doesn't like her and Harry won't disagree with him because Ron's his first friend). I also think you picked up on something great with the lack of relationship with her parents once she found somewhere she belonged - from canon I got the impression that the Granger's never quite grasped the wizarding world, and Hermione spent so little time with them...
Rationalism: Well this one was certainly interesting... I'm not quite sure if I agree with the ethics of it, but it was certainly a new perspective on Muggle/magical relations within a family. I loved both Kevin and Callum as characters, and the two letters Kevin wrote home made me smile.
Riddlement: I have to say that I didn't like this one as much as the others... I can't quite put my finger on why, but I think maybe I didn't find it quite as brilliant as everything else. I think perhaps it wasn't quite as poignant as the other stories because it was about two boys finding out, not adults, and children believe things more easily. But don't get me wrong, it certainly wasn't bad. I think it made me laugh more than the others, and perhaps it was good to have something lighter, as some of the others have been quite dark... no that's not really the word, just sad really.
Rejection: Firstly, I loved how you connected Maeve to the resistance and how she'd left because of her brother, because it makes so much sense that in OoTP Seamus refuses to believe Harry because of his Mum - also because she lost her husband basically because of Voldemort. I always imagined it that Seamus' father hadn't actually left when he found out... not sure if it actually says in canon or not... anyway, this was beautifully written and I really loved the ending (though it's terribly sad).
So, all in all, your writing is captivating and really interesting and I can't wait for more (how many chapters will it be?). I also wanted to say, I love your creativity with showing the first signs of the children's magic, and what you said in your last response about how their magic relates to their personalities works so well. I also love how you give lots of different perspectives (as in parent, sibling, step-parent, husband) and how each story is something completely new and fresh; I don't think any of these stories have doubled up on ideas, which is really quite amazing, because often these kinds of stories are very similar (as in the parents reaction to their kids being magical scenario).
Anyway... I'll stop rambling now. I can't wait for more!!!
Author's Response: Another amazing review! I hardly know where to start... Yes, I wanted to portray the Grangers as loviing their daughter but never quite knowing where to start with the wizarding world. They knew it was better for Hermione, which meant I had to couch that "better" in terms that they would understand, i.e. to get her away from the bullying. We know that JKR was bullied at school: she says it wasn't all that serious, but Hermione is an exaggerated JKR, so I exaggerated the bullying too. ~ Yes, I agree that in PS Harry only found Hermione mildly annoying; he would have been quite happy to ignore her completely if Ron hadn't been so fascinated by maintaining hostilties.~ I don't agree with the ehics of "Rationalism" but I think it's what some wizards would do. JKR uses violence for comedic effect, yet at thet same time she tells us that it isn't really funny (think of Neville being bounced off Blackpool Pier). The wizards who would drown a child rather than let him be a happy Squib would not hesitate to deceive a Muggle about the real nature of Hogwarts or to laugh their heads off at how easy it was to exploit his materialism. ~ Now you mention it, "Riddlement" is the one place where I probably did repeat a theme. The Muggle stepbrothers react with delight, rather like Jasmine in "Rapture", and there's not much more to it. Unlike Jasmine, who will know about magic but live separately from it, the Slater brothers will be forced to live with it. It does make a difference to the tone of the household whether the witch is a parent or just a sibling. Jeremy will even marry a witch: I think it's a natural scenario that one way wizards marry Muggles is because they meet their Muggleborn friends' siblings or their Muggle siblings' friends. ~ I had to admit, I couldn't quite decide whether Seamus's father had left or not. Seamus talks in PS as if his father still lives with them. But we never see him in canon and he doesn't seem to have any authority in Seamus's family. Obviously, Muggles can't enter Hogwarts or attend the Quidditch World Cup, so that's why the mother is the only parent whom we meet directly; but they give so little consideration to Mr Finnigan that I really wondered if he was there at all. I did want to think that the "nasty shock" was something bigger than just "I don't like magic," and I once I found out what the nature of the shock was, it explained Seamus's mother's attitudes rather well. ~ I wrote 13 chapters (a coven-full!), but I couldn't find betas for two of them (both about mixed marriages), so I'm only posting 11 for now. The next one that I'll actually post is also about a mixed marriage, then the last three deal with the Big Issues of how magic fits into the universe. The final few stories have stings in the tail as I cheat progressively more on the original paradigm for this collection. ~ Thanks for all your support. Reviews like yours really make the writing worthwhile! GhV
I had been planning to review this when I finished it... but I'm so impressed particularly with this chapter that I just had to say something now!!
In general, I think you have a great idea here, and I think it's something that JKR doesn't explore a huge amount in canon, but it's very interesting. I particularly loved the quote at the beginning of "Revulsion" - I think that's really true.
Anyway, I'll write something quick about each of the ones you've written so far.
Rapture: What an ingenious idea that Lavender would exercise magic over clothing particularly! I loved how in this one, it ended up being for the best that Jasmine wasn't magical as well, as she had something else to focus her life on. I loved how you showed that it's possible to keep a family together through magic. Just one question - when they meet the Patils, where's Padma?
Revulsion: Well this one was almost the opposite... such a tragic story, and it really shows how magic - or something unknown and incomprehensible - can tear a family apart. Your characters were great, and I loved the detail you put into your research (particularly in how you connected Lisa to Thorfinn Rowle). Beautifully written.
Recognition: I really, really loved this one! I think you did a fantastic job of characterising Justin and explaining his background. I especially loved the bit when his mother discovers Gilderoy Lockhart, and the fact that Justin responded to his letter. But I particularly loved your attention to detail - for example the explanation of the Finch's over the centuries, which seems insignificant but just gives your story so much depth. Another example is how you mentioned that Prince William would be going to Eton a few years behind Justin... it just adds so much!
So anyway... fantastic idea for a story, I'm looking forward to reading the rest!!
Author's Response: Dear Katrina, Thanks for such a long and thoughtful review. I'll try to do it justice; I'm really impressed by how well you understand my writing. ~ I tried to give a different kind of accidental magic to each young wizard, and of course it's fashion for Lavender. You might have noticed that Lisa is the scientist who defies the laws of physics amd Justin would consider it vulgar (even subconsciously) to use magic unless some other person really needs it. In forthcoming chapters, Hermione's magic is all related to verbal cues and puns, while Kevin's is tied to plants and animals. ~ Padma might have been in Lavender's way at Madam Malkins. I saw very fast that she didn't need to be there at all because Madam Malkin didn't need to fit both sisters if they were identical. So obviously Padma and her father had already moved on to Flourish & Blott's to buy the textbooks. Their brother needed a fitting, though. Even though he isn't relevant to the story, I've somehow always seen Parvati & Padma as having an older brother. ~ Yes, "Revulsion" was a deliberate opposite, and you are very right: it's the "something unknown and incomprehensible" rather than magic as such that can tear a family apart. I think both Lisa's fathers would be terrified of anything they couldn't control - that must be how her natural father found the will to give up drinking. The mother was a closet intellectual, though: she would have loved the chance for more education, and that's why she was pleased - if bewildered - that Lisa would have opportunities. Turpin/Thorfinn was a no-brainer. After all, I AM the author of the Classlist essay! ~ And I am so touched that you liked "Recognition" because I did wonder if anyone would even understand what it was about. Evidently I underestimated the fandom, because you're not the only reader to recognise that the Baroness's dilemma wasn't really about magic or even class snobbery. It was the more universal theme of "I expected my child to do something ELSE!" Prince William did indeed go to Eton just two years after Justin should have, so Justin truly did throw away a massive worldly advantage. I wrote the Finch family history as a personal indulgence because I didn't think anyone else would be interested. Again, I under-estimated the readers of fanfic, and I am so glad to be wrong about that! ~ Thank you so much for writing in, and I hope you enjoy the subsequent episodes too. GhV
Great job! I really liked the idea you came up with- I've always wondered about this topic. Your characterization was amazing. I particularly liked "Rapture". Lavender has always been one of my favorite characters. I was also interested in the fact that she was a ballerina. I dance, too and I always thought that it would be really hard for me to give up ballet if I went to Hogwarts. Again, amazing job! ~Olivia
Author's Response: Dear Proserpina, I've always seen Lavender as a little girl who had dancing lessons, but somehow I don't think she had the long-term self-discipline to become a professional ballerina. I think many aspirations would be incompatible with Hogwarts, and the characters do have to choose. (Just like real life, really!) The characterisations are one of the best things about JKR's own writing, so thank you so much for telling me that I can do it too! GhV
wow what a moving chapter, definitely the best one yet! You nailed the character of Hermione's parents, and you did a great job describing how difficult it would be if you never got to see your only child because she belonged to a different world. I loved this chapter, can't wait until the next one!
Author's Response: Thanks for writing in, IWICW. I always felt there was a story about the Grangers that JKR wasn't telling us but was just waiting to be revealed. And after all that heavy stuff, I promise you that the next chapter will be a comedy.
Yeah, I know I've rewiewed this before but this is AMAZING that it deserved more than one puny review!
Firstly, thanks for updating so regularly!
Secondly, this chapter reduced me to tears, and I'm not even sure why. The ending was just so lovely and beautiful and sweet ... *squee*
Can't wait for next chap!
.:. Annie .:.
Author's Response: Dear Annie, I am so pleased that you liked my story enough to cry over it! I think the Grangers are very tragic people; even though Hermione loves them, we see in canon that she has almost no relationship with them. It was almost surprising to read in DH that Hermione did care and did miss them. It was very painful to write about what it must have been like for them to lose their only child to the wizarding world. Take a cyber-tissue from me: I promise you the next episode will be a comedy. Regards, GhV
i love this one-shot! I love how you made Justin's family seem so important and stuff...
Author's Response: It was JKR who did that! Anyone whose "name was down for Eton" is really, really posh; I didn't invent that part at all. Justin gave up a lot to train at Hogwarts; not only was his aristocracy worthless there, but he was attacked for being a Mudblood. Thanks for writing in, GhV