Good story. You did a good job of creating Pansy's character pretty much from scratch. She was believable, and easiet to sympathise with than in canon, though I didn't find her all that likable. Harry's break-up with Ginny seems like real life, and I didn't mind him shagging Pansy too much, though it seems obvious to me that their relationship won't last long. Personally, I think she isn't good enough for him.
Well, reviews for this story are generally unexpected, so hello!
I'm glad you understood Pansy in ways that canon wouldn't allow. If you think about it, Jo did rather demonise the Slytherins throughout the series, and many are hard on Pansy for wanting to turn Harry over and keep a bunch of people from dying. If Harry had known what would happen in the battle and that he was meant to die all along, he would've happily gone when she pointed him out in the first place.
Really, Pansy isn't terribly likeable, but deep down, she isn't a bad person so much as someone who's not had the best of priorities. I think Harry was surprised to find that she wasn't as awful as he thought she was, just as much as she didn't think she would like Harry as a person at all (considering she'd barely spoken to him in her life yet spoke *about* him at great length).
I think Harry is one of those people who needs someone to keep him anchored. During school, it was Ron and Hermione who kept him grounded and gave him the ability to work through all the crap that happened to him. But as they move on with their lives and if Ginny just didn't have the time to be there every time Harry needed to remember who he was and where he was going, Harry could very well slip in a self-absorbed wangst coma like he did in OotP. Pansy just lit a fire under his butt, lol.
No, I don't think they'd last, which is why I ended the story where I did. It was just fun to see Harry come to life because of someone completely odd and unexpected. Maybe it's something they both need: Harry needs to start feeling again, and Pansy needs to care about someone other than herself.
Anyway, thanks for the visit. I'm glad you enjoyed the story. :)
Jess, I really enjoyed this one! Liked the way you developed the characters in this manner in just a few chapters. Anything new coming from you on the horizon? (Promise I wont ask about the ending of my fav. one! Ha!) Havent read one setance from you I havent liked! As always, keep up the great work!
For the moment, nothing new. I'm still working on updating older things which I have shamefully let fall to the wayside. I'm glad you liked this. It's not a ship I particularly support, but it was fun to explore the darker and more pathetic side of Harry's psyche through the eyes of someone who sees things for what they are.
Thanks for stopping in. As always, it has been lovely. :D
I actually finished this story a few days ago and didn't get to review... but here I go. As you can probably tell by my previous reviews, I love this story. It has a great mix of romance, humour and mystery. Also I loved teh solution to the story - I hadn't guessed Runcorn, but he really does fit the role and make sense, particularly considering how much fear he obviously inspires in people.
I think your characterisation of Harry is interesting in this story - I like how he's almost retreated into the Muggle world to hide, after obviously a very difficult break-up. I think that suits his character very much, after having coped in the spotlight for so long it's natural he'd want to retreat. I also liked how doggedly he watched Pansy, and how he genuinely cared for her.
As I said in a previous review, Pansy is a well-fleshed out character in this. I enjoyed her quips, but also how she coped in a difficult situation - in this chapter, she did have to be saved by Harry, but she wasn't completely helpless, which I really liked. And somehow you really made me believe this pairing. And that's coming from someone who doesn't usually read non-canon pairings...
I think you wrote the dialogue for all the characters really well and it really moved the plot along. I also liked how it was Pansy's perspective throughout the story... it really worked for this.
So great story in general!
Yay! Well, I'm glad you liked the story, despite it not being something you would normally read. This was my first ever attempt to even mentally make Harry and Pansy work, let alone put it on a page. That it wasn't a disaster was nice. :)
One thing that has always bugged me about the typical stylings of the Post-Hogwarts universe is how Harry is portrayed. Sure, when he heads up the tower and dreams of a sandwich, he's on a bit of a surreal high, but what are the chances of him waking up and not realising that dozens of people are dead, many of whom he knows, and having the knowledge that he could've turned himself over before the battle and many of them might not have died at all? That sort of knowledge could destroy a lesser man and grind his soul into dust. Well, Harry's stronger than that, but he's still a human being. Every 'thank you' he received for his part in the war must have sounded so hollow and horrid in his ears, which I think would escalate to the point where he would want to live in around people who didn't know or care about his dubious celebrity.
This thought colours much of my work when I write Harry. I think he is capable of living a semi-normal life, but I also think it would be a long journey to get there. There's nothing to say that he didn't screw things up with Ginny for a while and end up in an inadvisable relationship. You notice that I didn't use an Epilogue Disregarded tag; it's because I don't think this ship could ever last, and this wounded Harry was always going to go back to Ginny. Pansy just needed to reintroduce him to the world of the living before that could happen.
Pansy is a fun character, and I should write her more. In a way, she's a lot like me personally, so it's easy to let a bit of me bleed onto the page and give her that extra bit of life.
I'll shut up now. As always, it is a pleasure discussing characters with you. Thank you for the read and review, and I hope to see you again soon!
Oooh, Jess, what a fab story! I'm sorry I couldn't review earlier, but things have been really busy for me with exams and stuff :(
Anyway, yay to Harry/Pansy again :D It is a ship I have a soft spot for, hehe. But what I think you accomplished in this story is that you retained their respective characters, especially the fact that they are so different from each other. And the chemistry between them is so tangible and real, and by doing that, you made the pairing believable.
But I also liked the actiony bits in this too. You write action really well, and I liked how the story was a mystery as well as a romance.
Anyway, useless review, but great story. Ooh, and I loved the open ending -- though if you wanted to keep it canon (and I'm assuming you are, since there aren't any AU/EWE warnings) then Harry/Pansy wouldn't last, would it?
Enough rambling. Nice to read your work again, Jess :)
Alas, I don't think Harry and Pansy could ever last, but I do believe that Harry after the war would need a kick in the butt to bring him back to real life and learn to live for himself rather than for the greater good. It's a bit different from my normal universe, but in the end it's the same.
I have a habit of leaving shippy stories that I don't think will end well with an open ending. For instance, Ribbons and Tangerines: open end. Wild Card: open end. This story: open end. Other stories of mine (which shall remain nameless and without specified pairings): open ending.
Anyway...useless author response. Thanks for reading, and I'm glad you liked it. I wasn't too sure about it after I sent it to the exchange mod, but it went over well in the fic exchange. Whatever. My brain hurts. *hugs*
I liked this chapter a lot - you really blended humour really well with danger. There were moments when I almost laughed, and you very clearly showed the sexual tension between Pansy and Harry, but the story is also ominous. I particularly loved the end of the chapter for this reason - “Don’t know,” he said. “At least as long as it takes to take down your father’s killer.”
His words hung in the air, and Pansy had the dreadful feeling that it could take a long time before she saw the light of day again. By this point I really started to empathise with Pansy, and yet at the beginning of the first chapter I didn't like her much and you've very quickly changed that. (I think I've stopped making sense here... the point is, Pansy is really well-characterised.)
I loved the scene when they arrived at Harry's house and Pansy broke down and Harry hugged her - I think it was beautifully written and worked really well within the plot, and it also showed another side of both of them.
I can't wait to keep reading... I'm loving it sofar.
I've never believed that people are the sum of their parts. Pansy is still that scared girl who was willing to hand over a classmate like a pig for slaughter; still the girl who picked on Hermione and her teeth; she's still the girl who sycophantically followed Draco because he was the best catch in their year. But no one is that empty and shallow. At first, it was hard to crawl around in her head and find things that could *possibly* make her attractive to Harry. But sometimes, being nothing one expects makes them a prime candidate to be everything one needs. Harry may not have fancied much of anything about Pansy, but he needed her to kick him in the arse and realise how pathetic he really was in his little hidey hole far away from everything.
Anyway, enjoy the rest of the story. :)
I love this start to your story, Jess! The beginning seems so much like the Pansy we see in canon, in which her looks and looking better than others are all that matter. I think you did a great job at quickly shifting from the superficial to her actually being in danger.
I think this really allowed you to show a range of emotions from Pansy - she is clearly really concerned about her mother and sad about her father. So you've really made her into a three-dimensional character.
I love the element of mystery in this - I wanted to keep reading so much that I nearly forgot to review...
I liked your characterisation of Proudfoot - his way of talking and no-nonsense manner really fitted the position of Head of the Auror Department.
Anyway, I'll get on and read more now. It's a great start and I can't wait to read more :).
Yay, you're back and even reading one of my weird non-canon pairing fics. Squeeee!
As we both probably know all too well, reality finds the sneakiest ways of knocking us down a peg. Poor Pansy's reality check was brutal :/ However, I think the kid's gonna be all right, lol.
Proudfoot is my go-to Head Auror until Harry takes over the position. He's appeared in a half dozen of my stories, usually pretty much the same as he is here. He's knowledgable, no-nonsense, tough, but in possession of an understanding of what makes people tick. Not only does it make him a good administrator, it made him one hell of an Auror. Moody could've learnt a few lessons from him.
Something tipped me off that Dawlish was not right, so good writing there - very subtle, but fun to find out I was right! And it was nice to see Pansy enjoy being rescued, although she certainly played a part as well.
The second half where they are sitting around toying with each other had me grinning the entire time. The Star Trek references were hilarious. It's weird to hear them from wizards, but as Harry grew up Muggle for so long, why not return to his roots? Plus you've written him as someone almost wanting to escape the wizarding world, which I still find sort of heartbreaking. Lucky Pansy, really.;)
Fun fic, Jess! Very nice job with such a rarepair!!
Well, I like to think that the fact that Dawlish was there at all to be a tipoff that something might go wrong, considering his past. Buuut, Pansy didn't know this and only knew him as one of the Aurors there when she showed up to the Ministry. I think it wouldn't be PC for the Ministry to un-employ Dawlish because of something he had no control over (like firing someone with a disability), so they would find him non-field work to do. I considered my plot devices carefully...mostly, hehe.
One of the main reasons why I including Harry having a TV was because of the concept of childhood regression. The most extreme example I can think of is Michael Jackson and his Neverland Ranch and fascination with young boys. He was robbed of his childhood by his career, so he spent a large part of his adulthood trying to regain things that one would associate with childhood. On that vein, Harry grew up watching Dudley have toys galore, eat whatever he wanted (until the grapefruit incident), and watch whatever he wanted on TV. Whether it mattered to him consciously or not, Harry's subconscious, as he is relatively normal despite his extraordinary life, could easily have demanded a revisit to all the things he missed out on as a kid. And Harry wanting to escape from the wizarding world almost goes without saying. I would think, after the war was over, he would rather move on than revisit the thing over and over again in the form of everyone stopping him on the street and bringing it up, even with the best of intentions.
Anyway, that's all of my ramble. Thanks for reading! I'm glad you enjoyed the story, despite it being an, er, unlikely pairing. No fairytale ending...just an open one that could go in a couple different directions. :)
Jess! That was lovely :) Your characterisation of both of them was spot on, though I liked how this was all from Pansy's point of view. I also quite like the fact that Harry knew it was a trick from the start, but let Pansy, at least for a bit, walk into it, very like Dumbledore did with Harry when he realised Moody was an imposter.
The phrase "His expression was bizarrely uncharacteristic to the point where he looked nearly orgasmic." made me laugh out loud, though I did wonder, given how little Pansy knows him, the extent to which she'd think it uncharacteristic-unusual perhaps instead.
I also liked the way Pansy was sure something was wrong, but was kind of confused as to whether it was because there was something wrong with Dawlish, or that she wanted to be with Harry.
I loved how Pansy was brave, and snarky, and I also liked how she Disarmed Runcorn as well, and her joke about the paperwork and the handcuffs!. And, as you know, I'm not too keen on premature declarations of love, but I liked the hint of a greater intimacy beyond sex at the end. It was very nicely done :)
Anyway lovely story, Jess, which I really enjoyed reading. Alex
I didn't want to rob Pansy of what made her innately Slytherin, which was good instinct and an ability to spot potential danger. She could definitely tell that something was awry, even if she wasn't sure right away what it could've been. This is one of those occasions were her horrific seventh year Dark Arts education came in handy.
The story had to end on a note of bonding. I was going to choose emotional bonding overy physical, but being as greedy as I am, I decided I wanted both. Though Harry's words say a different thing, he really did care about her (as evidenced by his comment about never wanting to kill someone so badly in his life).
Anyway, while this was a departure from what I normally write, I sort of have a soft spot for this pairing now. It's fresh and fun and chockfull of possibilities. Thanks for riding along! :D
Helllooooo. Noooo, I don;t want this to end. But actually, it makes sense that it did end there. This has been a joy to read. Pansy was lovely, (well a b1tch but a fab one) and Harry was very IC. Decent plot too. I am guessing you've been trawling SBBC so you'll know my views in real things in the Potterverse. I won;t elaborate, except to say that whilst I found the references amusing, I'm not sure it added much to the story. It did make me giggle though and as passing references (and not the basis for a fic) then I found this quite clever. /annoying peeve of Crolls.
Thank you for a great story. ~Carole~
The only reason I chucked the TV in there is because of where they were, it's far more likely that Harry could have a TV. Plus, since he was living there as almost an act of escape, it goes without saying that a brainless activity like TV would be something he would need. And as we both know, it's easy to get sucked into ST: TNG, lol. The references to parts of the show were meant to show that, while Pansy didn't enjoy the show, exactly, but she was watching it with him and had bonded with him over something. It was just a tiny nugget to further expand on what happened between the time they arrived and the time she left.
I think my favourite part of this last chapter was when Pansy was confronted by Runcorn and couldn't stop herself from vomiting out cliche lines while trying to give Harry the time to strike.
Anyway, thanks for reading. I was worried that culling the smut would damage the story, but it worked out after all. :D
Score one for them both! I seem to remember you saying something once about angry sex. This must be it, because that was totally some hot angry sex. I feel sort of bad for Harry, that he's at this low point in his life. In this chapter you've brought him down a bit more than the others. He was damaged and closed off before, but here he is sort of pathetic in his pining and his bottled up anger could be dangerous. Interesting take on him. I am definitely curious to see if something lasting comes of this tryst, or if Pansy moving on is motivation for Harry to kick himself into a better life than sitting around watching Star Trek reruns. Which was highly amusing, by the way. :)
Nice one, twin! ~Gina :)
Every day, these review notifications take less and less time to get to my inbox. One of these days, I might even get one within an hour of the actual review, hehe.
Harry is a complicated guy in my head. What eventually drove him to Pansy was a potent cocktail of many things: latent angst over his issues with Ginny, annoyance at how easily Pansy could push his buttons, cabin fever, and maybe juuuuuuuust a little bit of blueball syndrome. (trust me...the original is far smuttier, lol) This gave him release in many forms; he could use this as ammo to convince himself that he was capable of moving on if he needed to, it gave him the illusion of control while penned up with someone who cardinally pisses him off, and probably feels pretty friggin good to finally get some without emotional baggage attached to it. Definitely a recipe for good, angry sex. :D
Anyway, I have the original last chapter's worth done, but I'm adding a bit onto the end for good measure. Hope you like it.
Oh Jess, this is too brilliant. I love your snarky Pansy (and the doctor who joke with “Well, it’s bigger on the inside!”) and your slightly world-weary post-war Harry, who is rather sweet when it finally comes home to Pansy that her father was dead. I thought you did an excellent job of her characterisation--I love how vain and bitchy she is when hgetting ready to go out, how Daddy's girl-y, but then shows some common-sense when hiding, and her thoughts also jump to her mother very quickly once at the Ministry.
And witch meets punks :) Although I would say that most punks I know (well, I don't know any but see around) tend to quite like being looked at/ are incredibly polite- but maybe Harry's just saying that to freak Pansy out :) I liked her response to the thought of kissing Harry, when that's obviously where this is going....;) You've got a typo "After the First Wizarding World" where you mean war, not world. One thing I love about your stories is how quickly the tone changes- silly partying girl, to girl upset, to the sadness of "they were Ginny's"...Anyway straight onto the next chapter I think and lovely story :) Alex
I love writing Harry in the role of a damaged war veteran, and pairing him with a snarky, self-absorbed girl is almost a sure way to make him forget his other troubles and spend his time being annoyed/attracted to her. I'm glad you approve.
As I have the focus of a squirrel in a bait shop, I need a variety of emotions and situations when I write pairing fic. I find it necessary in order to legitimise the pairing I'm writing by throwing in some various forms of adversity.
I'm glad you got the Who joke. Only one other person so far got it (Gina), so it's a nice little nugget I'm glad you spotted, hehe.
Thanks for reading, and I'm glad you're engjoying it!
WHoaaaaa! ha ha ha - YES! Pansy gets her man. And I hate the biyotch - but this is so good and Harry deserves a little bit of ... hmm, I was going to say fun, but actually I mean pure sex and lust.
Brilliant story. This is so much fun. Oh, and I was giggling when she called Hermione a beaver - hee hee.
Best line - She had never experienced this brand of passion before: wanting to hate whilst hating to want.
It was *so* hard to edit down the smut. It was full of Pansy's snark that it was almost a shame to cull it down. However, for the sake of submission, I had to, even though it was some of the better smut I'd written. I might slap up the uncensored version on LJ so it isn't wasted. :)
Great start. I want to know more about her.
I think Pansy is a bit more than the girl from the Great Hall who didn't see why they didn't just hand over Harry. I hope this story will change your view on her. :)
I love your Harry. Didn't I saw that in your last PP/HP story? I just love how normal and damaged he is. In some ways he's more real than JKR's Harry, because she puts him on a bit of a pedestal. I think most of us do. You have him smoking (last story) and living in seedy Muggle areas, rather a bit bitter, it seems. I so want to take care of him and fix him when I read one of your stories, lol.
I'm glad Pansy had a bit of a breakdown here, I was wondering about that. And I'm glad we learned more about who was after her dad. As usual, you have a nice mystery going with your pairing. So envious. I can't even write a rarepair yet alone a romance with an actual plot.
Anyway-it's going to be fun watching these two shack up and come around, plus learn more about whomever was after her father. So don't take long. ;)
I always thought it was a miracle that Harry wasn't more psychologically traumatised than he was after not only his upbringing, but his lot in life, as well. The reason I wanted him to live in a shady corner of town is because he knows no one will bother him there. Even if some miscreants knew where he was, they'd have to traverse the dodgy population around his place to contend with. And I rather do think that Harry would surround himself with Muggle things. A common reaction to being deprived of things as a child is to relive that time of one's life as an adult, like women who collect dolls because their parents either didn't approve of them or couldn't afford them or grown men who buy Hot Wheels because they had always wanted them as a kid. What Harry would crave, at least to me, is just a normal slobbish existence like everyone else had.
Anyway, new chapter soon. Hope you like it!
Ooh, dark start. Of course. ;) What a great set-up, a great idea. I could totally see this happening. I sort of feel bad for Pansy, having lost her dad like that. I like that you haven't given everything away in this first chapter, since I'm wondering what happened and now I have to read on to find out. Good story, twin!
Well, hello! I'm glad a strange ship like this one hasn't scared you off. I didn't think I'd like it either, but it is an interesting dynamic.
Plot = yay! I love adding plot to things because it makes the characterisation so richer. It's fun to bend people until they break. :D
OOOOH, interestinggggg. Jess, I am so enjoying this story. I know this was for an HP/PP fest which is actually a ship I think .... um ... let's be honest implausible and dumb (eeep), but you're making this plausible. Yeah, you really are. I love Pansy in this ... or rather I love her character. She's such a biyotch especially her snarky remarks about Millicent - ha ha ha. The exchange of clothes was great. I love how Harry really didn't seem to understand her attachment to female clothes - men! *rolls eyes*
One other thing - thank you for giving this a plot. Too many ships are just that - a ship with no rudder and thus no direction drifting with no breeze. Can I get any more metaphors in here? I think not.
Look forward to the rest and the smut version ... heh heh heh. ~Croll~
Well, my bread and butter is taking ships that shouldn't work and make it happen at least to an extent. I'm not sure if I could fully support this ship, but I do think it's a bit of good fun for Harry to be railed at by a snarky b!tch. Personally, I think he enjoys the feeling of being in charge. :)
Anyway, I'm rambling rather ineffectively, so I'll shut up and get back to writing, hehe. Ta for the read/review!
OOOH, intriguing young, Jessica DiStrange. I like this and can't wait for the next chapter. You've managed to keep Pansy perfectly in character and yet also sympathetic. Good story, too. ~Croll~
Well, naturally, the smut that had been in this story will have to be edited out, as it's a bit too explicit for MNFF, but once we get past that point, I'll so slip you a copy of the original.
Good start. I always thought Pansy was an interesting character and had a story to tell. Can't wait for more.
Pansy has her share of qualities that scream to be put into fic. This is actually the first time I've written her in a main character light, only to find that she and I have an alarming amount of things in common. :/
Thanks for reviewing. Next chapter goes up later today. :D
Omg I can't wait until they get to the safe house!
And you shall find out in a couple days. Next chapter is waiting to go up. :)