The Reason You Loved Me Before
So good! I absolutely loved the ending, it has me tearing up.
Author's Response: Thank youuuuuu so much! I might write a sequel someday, so watch this space :D I am so glad you enjoyed reading it, and sorry for making you tear up, lol.
When Will I See You Again?
Leanne was actually a Hufflepuff, I just found out.
Author's Response: Ummm, actually, that's only movie canon. In book canon (which is what I stick by), her House is unknown. Some people say she's in Gryffindor because she was telling Katie about the terrible match against Hufflepuff or whatever, but I think I can stretch canon a wee bit for that, lol. Anyway, I'd love to know what you actually think of the story, so if you feel like writing another review, by all means do so :)
The Reason You Loved Me Before
Okay, when reading the beginning of this chapter, I copy-pasted several passages that made me go "aww" but I had to stop about halfway-through because they were just too many. This was just beautiful, Soraya, really. I'm not sure what else I can say; I enjoyed this. It makes me want to write femmeslash. Well done. (And I almost became a bit a teary-eyed at the end :))
Author's Response: Yayy, thank you so much! It means so much to me that you liked it, and that you wanted to go "aww" so often, lol. I'm so glad you enjoyed reading it (and though I'm not entirely sure what to say to you being nearly teary, I shall take it as a compliment :)). Thank you for the lovely review. <3
The Reason You Loved Me Before
Firstly, I have had no desire whatsoever to cleach my eyeballs while reading this. Secondly, I did enjoy this very much.
I was quite surprised by the ending - with all the angst of the first two chapters, I hadn't expected such a happy ending. But it did actually follow on quite naturally.
I really liked how you did their day in Hogsmeade, leading up to when she gets the necklace - it blended really well with what was already set out in canon.
I liked the tension between them at the start of the chapter - I thought you did a good job with Leanne, who is obviously conflicted between wanting to talk to Katie and wanting to be angry with her for just walking out like that.
I loved how you wrote the scene when Katie wouldn't let Leanne say she loved her and Katie was dressing her... somehow by writing that, it was a lot more powerful than if they'd talked - there was such great tension between the two of them.
If I have one criticism for this story, it's that everything seems to happen very quickly, and the whole story doesn't seem to have the same tone - especially the end of this chapter is fairly light and focussed only on their relationship, whereas the previous chapter had a lot more darker themes in it. It just seems to move between the two very quickly. But it's really only a small thing, I actually liked the story very much.
Author's Response: Hahahahaha, I'm glad of that :) I really am very happy you enjoyed this, despite your occasional criticisms.
I wanted to give them a happy ending. They deserved it, after all the crap I put them through, lol. It's good to know it was a natural ending, though.
And I'm glad you liked the tension between them. Also, the scene where Leanne wanted to tell Katie she loved her was another addition -- it wasn't in the original version. It was meant to be completely packed with tension, lolol. And yeah, it wouldn't quite work as well if they just had that conversation.
Yeah, everything happens too quickly for my liking too, but I couldn't make it too long, because it was originally for a swap. (Also, exams and so on get in the way >.<) However, I am planning on converting parts of this into an OF, where I'm basically combining with Flicker and Fail -- the aspects of amnesia and so on -- with my Loulily stories.
I'm really glad you enjoyed it, though! Thanks for the lovely review. :)
A Fickle Heart
Well I said in my last review I was interested in their parents... I wasn't quite expecting this though. I loved the bit when Katie was saying to Leanne that basically their lives were reversed - as in, Leanne should be the one with the addicted mother etc - that drew a really interesting connection between the two of them.
In the first chapter, I felt more sorry for Leanne, although bad for Katie too, and I don't think Katie could be blamed for not realising Leanne loved her... anyway, in this chapter, it sort of went the other way - because at least Leanne has a family and a job and a life.
The dialogue between them is very well-written and at times tense, at others like old friends, which really fits this relationship.
I can't wait for the last chapter, so I'm going to leave this just as a short review and keep reading.
Author's Response: Yeah, it was a bit unexpected, lol. Buuuut I hope you thought it was believable/accurate, because that was a big concern of mine also. And yep, that was what I was going for about Leanne and Katie's positions reversing.
Yay to you liking the dialogue! I do think that's one of my strengths, one of my few strengths, hehehehe. Thank you for the reviewwwwwwww!
When Will I See You Again?
It took me a bit of time to get into this story... but by the end of the chapter, I've fallen in love with it.
I think at the beginning, I found you over-wrote it a bit, for example the line but instead, they are dull and blank and confused - I think that would be more effective with just one adjective. Anyway, that's just a really small thing.
At the same time, though, I was intrigued from the beginning - as to how much Katie would remember, and exactly what their relationship had been like in the past.
You flowed really naturally from the present tense at the beginning to the past for all the flashbacks.
I think the chapter got really interesting from their kiss onwards - that introduced a really interesting element of tension and drama between them. I thought it was interesting that you mentioned Cedric right at the beginning, especially because he turns out to be so important to the story.
I think the very last section was the best - you really managed to show both girls' emotion and it almost made me want to cry... and that last line was just absolutely beautiful.
One other small thing - I found that the scene when they get on the train through to their Sorting was a little long - obviously it's important, especially the Sorting, but it dragged a little for me.
The dynamics between their parents were also really interesting and I think they add something really different to the story... I'm hoping you explore that a bit more in the next two chapters... although I'm also very interested to see how their relationship moves from here and what impact Katie's memory loss will have on all of it.
I like the way you've contrasted the two of them - Katie is extroverted, and in that final scene it is her expressing all her emotion, while Leanne is more quite and studious and always holding her feelings inside... and the one time (the kiss) when she ran with her emotions, it had horrible implications.
So basically I can't wait to keep reading, which is why this isn't really a very good review, sorry.
Author's Response: Yayyyyyy, I did a happy dance when I saw four more reviews from you, Katrina! Thank you so much for all of them.
This is, I admit, not one of my stronger stories, but it's also one that's rather dear to my heart because of just how much I angsted over it. I swear I must have shed a few tears over how crap certain parts were, and then I rewrote those parts. I agree that it was overwritten to begin with, and I totally get why you couldn't get into it at the start.
I'm glad you thought the transition between present and past was done well -- that was something I was quite concerned about. And yeah, the kiss was kind of like *the* moment between them. Cedric does play a fairly large part in the story, yes. He is a good guy; it's just that Leanne was jealous of him, lol.
I always feel bad when I make people cry, not gonna lie, but I'm hoping it was a good thing that you *nearly* cried :P It was meant to be emotional, so I'm glad you thought it was too.
I do see what you mean about the Sorting scene, but it was something my first beta (Sarah/Sapphire at Dawn) asked about, so I kind of expanded on the idea after the original was posted on LJ for Alex. And yeah, the dynamics between the parents are something I was interested in.
Katie and Leanne are intentionally very different, though I find that opposites attract a lot, so I hope it's believable.
Anyway, thank you for the lovely review!
A Fickle Heart
Okay, so I've just finished the second chapter and now I feel a bit confused. I do love the way you're taking this-- adding a bit more complications, parents with substance abuse and all that but at the same time I feel it's a bit sudden... No, sudden is not the right word because you do explain that Katie and Leanne haven't seen each other in a while.. but I feel it's perhaps a bit much? I know it's supposed to shock Leanne how Katie and her mother have changed but perhaps just the fact that Mary has a drug problem is enough?
Also, I do have a bit of an issue with Katie's mother doing heroin. Of course, it's hard to explain this thoroughly within the story because it's perhaps not Katie's favourite topic to discuss... But I think it would have been a bit more believable to have Mary do prescription drugs for anxiety of something like that. Those drugs are very addictive and to me they're a little more plausible for a 40 something (?) year old woman to come by and get addicted to at least if she's never done drugs before... I would probably have mentioned Mary having had a taste for alcohol or something in the past- but that's just me (terrible grammar there, sorry). On the other hand, Katie does address the fact that society (like me) doesn't really expect people like Mary to become heroin addicts.
Meh, I sound really negative, but I did enjoy this chapter a lot! Your descriptions for example are vivid and really puts the reader in the moment- I could picture Katie and her Mum very clearly and almost smell them. You do a fantastic job with that and it's also interesting to see how the Leanne/Katie dynamic has changed now that the "power balance" (don't know what else to call it in English) between them has changed. I'm just picky about drug stories because I've read and experienced way too much about it. Drugs are my "thing" (that sounds bad- I've never done any) and I've been obsessed/fascinated/disgusted with drugs and addiction since I was eleven. Basically, I know too much about it.
In conclusion; I'm really intrigued by how you have turned this story around- it was not at all what I was expecting. I look forward to the next chapter and your writing is really well done. The only objection I have is about the extent of the misery- I think it could have worked and perhaps have been a little more believable to moderate it a little. But again, this is a good story (it's definitely not crap as you said!)
Now I feel really mean, but again, I really enjoy this story! Don't hate me!
(Oh, and about what I wrote in my last review about "style"; what I meant was that I usually read verrrryyyy introspective dark Death Eater stuff- usually in first person. I want to read other stuff but the archives are so vast and I don't know where to begin so most of the time I end up reading those kinds of stories. Simply put, what I meant was that I was glad I started reading this. I should really learn to express myself better- I attribute that to the fact that it's been a while since I studied English and spoke it regularly.)
Author's Response: Thank youuuuuu for such a wonderful and detailed review. I very much appreciate it.
You're right in that it seems a bit sudden. I kind of did intend for it to be sudden, for the very reason you said, because Katie and Leanne haven't seen each other/don't know much about what's going on in the other's household anymore. I did do all the research I could, but, um, as you can imagine, all of it, pretty much, was from the internet (and that was difficult as it was). That sounds like an excuse, eeeep. What I mean is that if there are any inaccuracies, then it's entirely my fault and I really shouldn't have tried going into unknown territory. The thing is, though, the whole story's written from Leanne's POV, not Katie's, and therefore, the main focus isn't on Katie's family, but on Leanne as a character and what she goes through. I'm quite OCDish with changing POVs, especially when it's only once (I somehow don't think it would work that way :S) and I was actually thinking of doing a follow-up where the whole drugs thing is explored in a lot more depth, but I'm very much a binge-writer, unfortunately. I get sudden bursts of inspiration and then whole periods when I don't write anything >.< So I don't know, but I do want to cover it more thoroughly.
I like the idea of Mary starting on prescription drugs, actually. I understand it's a really sensitive topic and obviously one of interest to you -- I might take a second look at it and edit, because the last thing I want to do is offend anyone (and I hope I haven't :S).
On the upside, I am glad you're still enjoying it (I think so, anyway, lol). Description has never been my strong point -- dialogue is more my thing, I think -- so it's nice to know you thought I did a good job with that. And I completely understand what you mean by power balance. I think it's really interesting you pointed that out, actually, considering one of Alex's prompts was power, and another was money. I'm glad you picked up on that, because it was something I wanted to put across in the story :) Oh, and I know they are both rather angsty at this point, but... let's just say you might be pleasantly surprised if you read the third chapter.
I quite like first person, but I can't write it anymore :-/ It can be very well done, like in Thin Red Lines, for example (and Alex's other Lucy stuff). I know what you mean about the archives being so vast -- I feel like that myself sometimes, which is why I usually just review my flist and people I know are active on the boards/archives.
Thanks again for the in-depth review. You really got me thinking, Lovisa! And, FWIW, if I didn't know English wasn't your first language, I never would have guessed. You shouldn't be so apologetic!
When Will I See You Again?
I had a five hour train journey yesterday so I was really glad to have something to do and of course I'll review this (but be warned, my reviews are in no way SPEW worthy, they're kind of crap actually :P)
I enjoyed this very much. It is definitely not the usual type of fic that I choose to read (not femmeslash per se but the style) so that I felt compelled to continue is a very very good thing (thank you, I needed new influences, getting so bored with my own taste).
What I think was especially well done is the way you reminded me of falling in love for the first time. The physical pain, and pleasure, it is to be near the one you love who doesn't have a clue and is just way too close... Reading this, I remembered all that (I sound like a really old lady) and needed to know more... That fact that Leanne is in love with a girl who is also her best friend complicates things even more and that's probably why I love slash- it's one thing to be in love with someone who doesn't know, but to see that person with the opposite sex knowing that she will NEVER reciprocate your feelings because that is just not how that person ticks.... that's devastating.
Okay, I'm going to stop rambling now and read the next chapters and hopefully I'll return with something that is more like a review and less like a stream of conciousness type of thing......
Author's Response: Hello, Lovisa! Firstly, thank you so, so much for reviewing this. You have saved me! :D
Your review is not crap! Really, it isn't. Even if it were a one-liner, I would be happy :) Seriously. And it's nice to know that, despite the style not being your thing (is it the non-linear-ness, by any chance?), you still seemed to like it and read on anyway. That makes me very happy.
I love the idea of best friends (regardless of gender -- for example, I'm a closet James/Sirius shipper, lol, but I also believe Teddy and Victoire grew up as best friends) falling in love, though it is sad when one friend is completely oblivious, or else brushes it off the way Katie did.
Thank you so mcuh for the review, Lovisa! I will definitely have to repay the favour sometime (probably after my exams, though). Ta lotsly!
A Fickle Heart
This is one of the many stories I've been meaning to read for forever but haven't >.> In this case forever started during SPEW buddies when you mentioned writing this and shipping Katie/Leanne.
I think that's a pretty interesting ship in itself, especially since we get so sparse a glimpse of Leanne in HBP. She's mostly an OC, so I think you gave her a good background and she's a pretty fun character to read.
I love how there's not a particular amount of romance yet, but it's still such a great relationship between Katie and Leanne friend-wise.
If I had a crit, it would probably be the last line. It just seemed like you were trying to get the chapter over with, just a little. It seemed very sudden.
This isn't much of a review, but I think this story definitely deserves more than two reviews D:
Author's Response: Oooooh, Lily, thank you for the review :)
Seriously, the fact that you've reviewed this (while IMing me, hehehe) means a lot, especially given how unloved this story has been thus far. So thank you. I'm glad you seemed to have liked it, and that I sparked your interest from the SPEW buddies chat :)
The idea of Katie/Leanne, funnily enough, came about in the weirdest way. Basically, I was brainstorming ideas for Alex's Secret SPEW story, and the one ship I was thinking about was Katie/Penelope, and as a side pairing, Katie/Leanne. But I liked the dynamics of Katie/Leanne, so it kind of stuck out to me more than Katie/Penelope, so in the end, I just ditched Katie/Penelope and wrote Katie/Leanne instead. So yeah, I'm glad you liked the background I gave her.
Oh, but the romance is coming! In the next chapter, that is. Things will get... interesting :P I see what you mean about that last line. The thing is, this started off as a two-shot and mushroomed into a three-shot, so the place I decided to cut it at was probably not the most suitable. Oops.
Anyway, thank you for the lovely review, and I hope to see you on the next chapter!
Reviewer: Equinox Chick
When Will I See You Again?
Ohhh, nooooo, Cedric's deaaaad. *sob*
Sorry, I always go to pieces at this point because I love cedric/Oliver so much and hate the fact that he dies. *sigh*.
Proper review starting now. I like your characterisation, Soraya. We know so little about Leanne and only marginally more about Katie, so they're virtual OCs and yet you've fleshed them out well. The background about their parents is interesting, and I hope this is going to be brought up again. I thought Mary was rather harsh on Angela at first but I'm thinking she thought Angela had done it deliberately. Will they make up? Well, even if they don't, it gave the perfect reason as to why Katie and Leanne didn't see each other as much during holidays and were then separated by their houses
Katie was a bit of a bitch. Snogging cedric like that - but I suppose she was embarrassed by the kiss with Leanne,a nd then later I realised she actually loved him. And now I dislike Cedric for turning her down - booo hisss. (I have Katie and Cedric as childhood friends, too, but not romantically.)
The pain of the unwanted - sigh. I think that's a quote from a famous poem, but it rings so true here. poor Leanne and poor Katie.
I should mention the start of this, because I did like the way you started with Katier being in hospital unable to recognise Leanne. It gave the story a strong setting.
Interested to see what happens next.
Well done. ~Carole~
Author's Response: Carole! My review saver! Thank you for the lovely review :)
I know, Cedric dying was a big moment for me too, and I did feel sad while writing it. And yes, Leanne in particular is very, very minor, and I had never come across Leanne before in fanfic (which may have been a good thing because it didn't colour my opinion and characterisation of her) so it was nice to have virtually free reign as to her background, and Katie's too.
This story only has one more chapter left (I don't know if you've read chapter two...) and there's more about Katie's mum in the second chapter, so you'll find out more then, if you decide to read it of course.
Yeah, Katie was a bit b!tchy, but you're right -- it's because of how confused she was about her feelings for Leanne and vice versa. Besides which, she was only fourteen/fifteen at the time, so she didn't know any better.
I'm so glad you liked it :) This is definitely not one of my strongest stories, so it's so nice to know that you seemed to like it nevertheless. Oh, and I'll try to remember to poke you later today re Leanne's house, because it was something that Alex mentioned and I did look it up.
Anyway, thank you for such a wonderful review :)
When Will I See You Again?
Soraya--this was so lovely. I love the way you characterise them both, and the relationship between them, with Katie rediscovering it, and Leanne desparate for her to do so. I think it’s interesting the way you play with the danger that Katie may never remember, and also the way Leanne snatches on any chance that Katie might remember. The way you integrated the lyrics was very well done, also.
I loved their dialogue, and Leanne’s uncertainty and awkwardness, however I felt the “Do you...do you want me to explain?” seemed a bit...clumsy and sudden. You get the sense that Leanne is desperate for Katie to remember as quickly as possible, hence the spilling of her family history, but I think you could make it more gradual/ phrase it differently. Because she doesn’t really explain, so much as tell her life story, which isn’t quite the same thing.
However the way Leanne explained was well done. It was a lot of information, but since we are in Katie’s shoes of being ignorant of this, it worked, and particularly since Katie’s known her so long, but cannot remember--it’s just so sad. And then you built on this idea of shared history brilliantly with the scene of their first day at Hogwarts. Those are difficult, because there’s a balance to be struck between making it exciting for the reader, as there are so many sorting scenes, and to emphasise the excitement of the characters. I think if you’d written this linearly it wouldn’t have worked, but because you had foregrounded it with what is clearly such a strong friendship having been completely forgotten, it made it all the more poignant.
However, I hate to point this out (and it took Canon Queen Carole to point it out for me during In The Heat Of The Morning), but Leanne is canonically a Gryffindor. She and Katie are gossiping about Cormac in the Gryff Common Room at some point. Basically, ha, now I’m going to be annoying Carole for little canon details like that, and suggest you do the same. She’ll hate us both very soon :p
The acrimony between Angela and Mary, and the child POV of Leanne and Katie was good, but I think Leanne caught on a bit too quickly, given her age. I think it would have been interesting for her to not quite understand for a bit longer, but I understand that the focus was Katie/Leanne and not Katie and Leanne’s mothers. I thought the conversation between Leanne and her mother was so well done--it showed their closeness, and was just lovely :)
I really enjoyed Katie and Leanne’s conversation--it was very realistic, yet showed how close they were, but also Leanne’s increase in feelings towards Katie, while Katie was interested in Cedric. That jealousy of Leanne’s/ uncertainty over whether it was okay to be jealous or not, and inability to let Katie know, was really powerful--I felt sorry for her, particularly the moment where Katie feeds Cedric the chocolate cake.
The scene at the end, with Leanne being so much in love with her, but also being such a good friend, letting Katie shout and rage and be upset, while she has to just take it all. The lines “Yes, Leanne felt like saying, trying not to move. Only it’s worse, because the person I’m in love with is within f------ distance of me right this second and I can't do a thing --” are so powerful. Really, well done.
This is basically a chronological squee, isn’t it? I’m sorry this is not a SPEW review, and at times incoherent, but it is a beautiful rarepair, written very well, with great dialogue and characterisation. Thank you, so, so much for writing it for me, and I’ve read it on LJ, but I can’t wait for the next chapter of this revised version. Again, thanks so much!! Alex x
Author's Response: Alex, thank youuuuuuuuu so much for the review. Sorry for taking so long to reply -- I've been uber busy this weekend and I wanted to do this review justice (though I never really could). Yay to integrating lyrics nicely; it's something I've always been bad at, lol, so I'm glad you thought I did them well. And yaaay, you liked the dialogue too. I always find it difficult writing the dialogue of characters who I've never written before (which is part of the reason why I didn't use any dialogue, really, in TCTOTC).
The scene when they first came to Hogwarts was one of the scenes I really wanted to include in the original, but I was so, so pressed for time (dunno if I told you but Jess IMed me the morning after -- haha -- the deadline and I hadn't even started it properly) that I wrote it in such a rush, so I couldn't include every thing I wanted in it. And I love non-linear stories; you know the epic OF I plan on writing? Yeah, it seems that that will be fully non-linear, which should be a challenge for me. And I was slightly concerned that the sorting scene would be boring, so I'm glad you didn't think it was (at least I hope so).
Okay, I had a look in HBP (because I'm a stickler for canon too and I would hate to have to put an AU tag on this or anything) and I'm probably stretching things here, but my theory is that Katie only said *to Harry* that Leanne told her about the match with Cormac. There's no explicit mention of Leanne actually being in the common room, so, mainly for the purposes of this story than anything else, for me, Leanne is still a Ravenclaw. She could well be a Gryffindor, but I also find it slightly strange that, if she was in the Gryffindor common room, she would have been mentioned by name as one of the seventh-years in the common room.
Hmm, I get what you mean about Leanne catching on quite quickly. The thing is, she's eleven/twelve at this point, so she probably would understand sooner or later. I think the main reason she figured things out straightaway is that I wanted to make it clear why Mary was so angry at Angela. And I'm glad you liked Leanne and her mother's closeness :) I do like Angela as an OC, and I have a bit of a backstory for her too.
Ooooh, I'm glad you liked Katie and Leanne's conversation. As I said, writing characters I've never written before is always difficult for me so it's good to know I at least got the dialogue kind of right, lol. And yay to you liking that line :D
Anywho, thank you for such a wonderful and definitely SPEW-worthy review (minus the chronological squee comment, hehehe, after my tutorial re disclaimers). I am honoured to have written it for the mighty Deathlex, and I shall see you on the next (and improved) chapter :D