This is a tremendously powerful chapter; well-written with the right amount of intensity. You unfold Hermione's injuries in such a way as to allow the reader to feel as much reaction as the people present in the room. I did expect some sort of charm or spell cast upon the doorway when Dumbledore left the kitchen to hinder any attempts to follow him from the kitchen!
As for Draco's tentative transformation...he is becoming a more credible example of change, though his interactions/confrontations with his age peers will demonstrate this more thoroughly, yes? The kitchen conversation between the Weasley sibs, Harry, and AD exceled in dialogue, but lacked in descriptives re: physical activity. I could easily imagine Ginny leaning forward or gripping the table edge in frustration, but I wanted to read the action cooresponding with her speech. LOVED the confrontation between Tom and Draco...there is nothing quite like a father's stand in defense of his daughter and you captured the right tone in the hallway encounter. Keep up the good work. I look forward to the next chapter.
Author's Response: I look forward to your comments and critiques for all of my remaining chapters! Thank you so much for your encouraging and honest words. You are obviously a writer, or professor, or someone with a thorough background in writing.
As for a spell from Dumbledore: I suppose I thought him telling them not to leave the room was enough, since who would disobey Dumbledore?! ;) Regarding Draco's transformation- you are correct, interacting with his peers will prove a bit more difficult! I see what you mean by my sparse physical descriptions in the kitchen; more thought to the activity would have resulted in a more well-rounded scene. Point taken! I am so very glad that the Tom/Draco conversation rang as true as I meant it to. :D
Once again, thank you for your critiques, and keep 'em coming! Luv, Stef :)
Absolutely BRILLIANT. This is most definitely one of the best HP fan fictions I have read. By FAR.
Most authors dance around the gruesome details but you however showed no restraint and I loved it. It just made the story that much more powerful. So BRAVO to you. I am EAGERLY awaiting the next chapter, please don't keep me waiting for long. Good 'dramione' stories such as this one don't come along often.
PLEASE BRING OUT THE NEXT CHAPTER!!!
Author's Response: I am humbled and extremely grateful for your high praise- thank you SO much!! It means the absolute world!! Above all, I wanted my fic to be BELIEVABLE and REALISTIC. Dramione's are difficult because the pairing itself is challenging, but I believe in it so much. I want my readers to believe in the psychological and emotional journey Draco takes and in the fact that he and Hermione come to trust in each other and care for each other. This fic is shortly coming to a close, and the sequal (in the works) will develop Draco and Hermione's romantic relationship through the coming of the war with Voldemort as Lucius and the Death Eaters hunt for them with a vengeance. Much action to come in Book 2! Thank you again for your tremendous encouragement; the next chapter's being beta'd now and then I'll post it to the queue. Be sure to let me know what you think of it! Luv, Stef :)
I'm glad that Hermoine realizes his changed mind and genuine concern. Great update! Also, the part about the car was very creative.
Author's Response: Thanks so much, hunny! Hermione has definitely realized that Draco is not who he used to be, but the question is: will the Orders members even give him a chance to prove it? Eeep-I'm so glad you liked the car stuff. I kind of parallelled Lucius and Arthur in their interest in how Muggle things work, but for polar opposite reasons. And Draco sneaking out to learn something he wasn't supposed to learn is so, well...Draco! Looking forward to what you think of the next chapter. Thanks again! Luv, Stef :)
Phew! So glad Draco and Hermione are safe...for now at least! And thank goodness for Hermione speaking up at the end or the whole room would have cursed Draco. I hope the Order lets him stay and see's how much he cares for Hermione. I love tis story, can't wait for more!
Author's Response: Hi sweetie! You are so right- they would have cursed Draco into the next life if Hermione hadn't said something in his defense. The next few chapters deal with the Order members' reactions to "new and improved" Draco. You can expect some nasty clashes with Harry, and especially, Ron. I'm looking foward to hearing your review of the next chapter. Thanks so much, hunny! Luv, Stef :)
Great use of dialogue. I think you captured Mad-Eye's character exceptionally well. The repartee between the gawking teens, followed by the hurried interactions with the adults kept the tension high and provided a good balance of anticipation/satisfaction for the reader.
I found Draco's "Broken" reply to Mad-Eye multi-layered: Draco's wizarding tool, his family dynamics, and his self-preservationist will can each be described as such. How you reconstruct Draco's persona in light of his new-found "heart" (and surrounded by a whole house full of distrust) will be challenging. Good luck!
Author's Response: Thank you so much! I greatly appreciate your review, especially because of its honest literary critique. As this is my first fanfic ever, I'm always concerned about how my writing comes across to the reader- whether it is believable and being understood as I intended. Your insight into Draco's "Broken" comment was delightful; I agree that it describes his life at many levels. Thank you for sharing it with me! As to the reconstruction of Draco's character: most of it will occur in the sequal to this fic, as Draco learns many life lessons from different members of the Order. There are only a few more chapters left in this story. If you would be so kind, PLEASE review my upcoming chapters. I'm very interested in your thoughts. Thank you,again, for your encouragement! Luv, Stef :)
Ah Stef, I can forgive you the non-canon detail because that was, yet again, another great chapter. I'm so glad that they escaped all right although, I did feel a bit sorry for Draco during his hostile reception! It was believable though, considering his previous behaviour and how worried they must have been about Hermione. I hope that, when she's better, she can persuade everyone that he's reformed! Well done again - keep up the great work!
Author's Response: Alice you darling dear! Thanks for letting me slide. :D The next few chapters (and there are only a few left) focus on the acceptance/non-acceptance of Draco by the different members of the Order. Major clashes with Ron are ahead! Thanks, as always, for letting me know what you thought. You always make my day!! Luv, Stef :)
Ilike you, i always believed Draco was basically good, too good a son,in fact, trying to live up to his parents' ideals. I love the way you portrayed how he made his self-realization so epic and almost like an aha moment. It made his change of colors from bad to good believable, plausible....and yes, it certainly would make readers say "i knew it! He's a good guy!" . Keep up the good work! I've read a lot of stories here so far, and i must say, yours is the best!
Author's Response: Oh!! That's music to my ears!!! :D You and I are on the exact same page regarding Draco. In my story, I really wanted to get inside his head as he sorted through the conflicts that I believe would be very real for him. Growing up in that family, how could he not be negatively affected? I think that, while he's not perfect, he has so much potential for good-given the right set of circumstances. Thank you so much for your wonderful compliment-I take it very much to heart. Be sure to let me know what you think of the chapters to come as well. Thanks!!! Luv, Stef :)
LOVE! Please please please submit more soon! And don't give up on this story. That happens to so many that I love. Stay with me!
Author's Response: Don't you hate when you're invested in a story and then the author just stops writing? GAH! It makes me crazy, too. But, fear not! My story is already written in its entirety!! I'm also starting my basic structure for the sequal *looks around desk littered with hastily scribbled-down plot notes* I'm just in the process of sending each chapter to my lovely Beta so that she can catch any mistakes I made before I post. Chapter 14 is in her talented hands as we speak. As soon as I get it back I'll send it here to the queue. I can't tell you how much it has meant to me that you've shared your thoughts with me so many times. I'm excited to see what you think of the rest. Big squeezy hugs to you! :D Looking forward to hearing from you soon, hunny! Luv, Stef :)
I adore the way you portray Draco. I always knew there was good in him, from the beginning. And the slow passionate way you bring he and Hermione together is genius. This is my favorite Dramione fic. Ever. :]
Author's Response: Really? Your favorite one EVER? That's one of the best compliments I've ever received!!! I am completely grinning from ear to ear right now, and bouncing up and down in my chair. You've so made my day. :D I'm glad you see Draco the way I see him too. I really believe that this is who he is, if he had the right conditions to step up and become a hero. I'm also glad you like the fact that I'm building up their relationship slowly. I don't get stories that have them all over each other by the third chapter. I'm also ALSO glad that you've been so kind to write a review after several chapters- it means the world! Luv, Stef :)
I just want to let you know that I love your writing style. It reminds me of how Rowling might write. There are so many fanfics with bad grammar or plots that don't make sense. Yours is amazing. Keep up the good work!
Author's Response: You have no idea how important your compliment is to me!! I am a STICKLER for good grammar- my Mother was an English teacher! I get frustrated by stories with horrible spelling and grammar mistakes because it makes me feel as though the writer doesn't care much about his/her own story. So why should I? I've also very carefully plotted the entirety of my story. It has to make sense, it has to be believable, or what's the point? I'm creating a highly unlikely couple with Draco and Hermione- my challenge, my duty, is to make readers believe that they really could fall in love. I so appreciate your wonderful words- thank you, especially, for the Rowling comment- it was huge!!! Luv, Stef :)
This was a great chapter. Very steamy. I love it. :)
Author's Response: Thank you so much! At the time I wrote it, it was the first time I'd ever written any sort of love scene. My face was bright red as I typed! :D Luv, Stef :)
This is absolutely amazing!
Author's Response: Hi! I'm so very glad you think so! This is my first fanfic, and so the lovely words from you and other readers mean the world to me. Thank you for taking the time to review; please continue reading and reviewing! Luv, Stef :)
You're at it again! This story never fails to make me gasp and want more. I simply love how Bellatrix is completely insane, and Snape's hawk made me cheer. Go Athena! Love, love, love it! Keep it up!
Author's Response: Hi, hunny! Always wonderful to hear from you! Glad the story is keeping its hold on you. :D Yeah, Bellatrix is in-freaking-sane in my story, but I like her that way, hee hee. You made my day about Athena the Hawk! I was so nervous about it- I wasn't sure if readers were going to love her or think that she's ridiculous! I love her, and she gets Snape off the hook as well. I'll queue up the next chapter very soon, I promise. Thanks again, so much! Luv, Stef :)
Yeah for updates! I'm a little surprised that you mentioned at the end that Draco kissed Hermione's lips but you wrote it so casually, like it wasn't a big deal. He just saved her life, it most definitely is a bog deal! I hope the Order finds them soon and I'll be interested to see everyone's reaction to Draco. I am loving this fic, keep it up!
Author's Response: Thanks so much, sweetie! And thanks for your note about Draco kissing Hermione's lips; I didn't realize that it would come across that way. I tried to make their first kiss in the previous chapter really special; in this chapter, he kisses her quickly, because they have no time to spare- it's like 4 kisses on her face in quick succession, like a compulsion. I didn't mean to make it sound so casual, but I went back and read it and I can see how it could be interpreted as such. I'll see if I can go back and re-word it a bit because, you're right, it IS a big deal! Thank you for pointing that out, hunny! Keep your reviews coming- they are helpful and very appreciated! Luv, Stef :)
Gorgeous! I'm on edge for the next chapter. I simply love this story :)
Author's Response: Thanks, hunny- That means a lot! Hope I continue to do it justice for you. Next chapter's up! Luv, Stef :)
Wow, read this fix in one sitting. Completely amazing, cannot wait for Chapter 13.
Author's Response: In one sitting? Wow! I'm so glad you found it that engaging! I really appreciate your review. Chapter 13 is in the queue, so it'll be up shortly. When it does, please let me know what you think of it. I hope you enjoy the rest of the fic as much as the part you've read so far. Thanks!!!! Luv, Stef :)
AMAZING chapter! So glad that he is (hopefully) getting her out of there.
Author's Response: Thank you so much! I always look forward to your comments. Keep your fingers crossed for our hero and heroine! Luv, Stef :)
Wow Stef! That was incredible! You perfectly showed how Draco was receiving a rude awakening when he saw what his parents were really made of. The bit with him and Narcissa was particularly sad, considering how much he loves her, but it was good for him to really open his eyes, even in regards to her. Lucius is a nasty piece of work! I'm so glad Draco finally took the revenge that he Lucius so long had coming to him. The moment between Draco and Hermione was so tender and sweetly innocent - it was perfect. I can completely understand every reaction throughout the chapter - he must have been so completely broken by the disappointment in his family members. And yay for Snape coming through with a plan! He's my second favourite Slytherin after all! Well done again - you did an amazing job :)
Author's Response: Awwww, Alice! You sweetie!! Thank you so much- your review shows that I got exactly what I wanted to come across in this chapter. This chap is the foundation of the title "Eyes Wide Open". Oooooohhh, don't you just hate Lucius? I was so happy to have Draco beat the crap out of him. It means the world that you would say that you understood every reaction in the chapter. I remember when you weren't sure Draco could redeem himself to Hermione. What do you think now? ;) Can't wait to hear from you for the next chapter (your second-favorite Slytherin has a big part to play!). Luv ya lots, Stef :)
omg!! so awesome! I was looking forward to this chapter, and I am ABSOLUTLEY not dissapointed. Nope, not at all. This is perfect. and so well written! any thoughts of being an author? sorry if my grammar is fucked up, but im from Sweden, and my school sucks at teaching English ._. but i love this, so much :D looking forward to next chapter, so keep it up, I trust you! ;D
Author's Response: You made me laugh out loud about your grammar!!!!!! ROFL! Your grammar is better than some of the idiots at my University, seriously. Your kind words just send me through the roof with happiness- this is the first story I've ever written, and so I've been nervous as to what people would think of it. You better review each chapter- I need the overwhelming encouragement you bring me! I'm so glad you love it so much- I do to! ;) Next chapter's being Beta'd right now, and then I'll post as soon as I can. See you soon! Luv, Stef :)
seriouslyy great chap. loved itt!
Author's Response: So happy you loved it! There's more to come- let me know what you think of the rest. Thanks so much! Luv, Stef :)