Hi, Cannae. I love it when an author takes a tiny, virtually overlooked moment of canon and unfolds it, as if a wrapped gift were being opened, to reveal all the intricacies inside. That is what you have done here. We all ought to know already that brief and seemingly simple episodes contain a wealth of little implications and ramifications, if we but search for them. Characters as richly developed as the members of the Malfoy family of course lend themselves to this kind of examination, and you have done it very well.
Your prose is very fluid; the sentences are complex and well constructed; the words are precise and carefully chosen. The images are varied and vivid. There are many lines that are noteworthy, such as “…he would rather starve than ever have to enter the Great Hall again…”, and “…do the unimaginable and apologize to a Mudblood…” (which contrasts with Draco’s “…know that his own arrogance had helped to fuel their grief…”; a little cognitive dissonance in Draco’s mind, it seems), and “…he had damned them before they were even born…”
I like the image of the Malfoys standing uselessly in the Entrance Hall as cleanup occurs around them. When you say that Draco is “aware that he and his parents were standing stupidly in the way,” and later the Malfoys go into the Great Hall, where Draco “steels himself for the ordeal ahead,”, you sharply reveal that there is no good and comfortable place for them to go, no welcoming refuge. One place is as bad as another.
The only line that seemed a little weak to me was the final line, “…facing the proverbial music." The word proverbial in that position seems to weaken the impact of the phrase “face the music,”, so I would have written something like “As the old proverb says, it was time to start facing the music…”
A very nice job. I enjoyed this story.
Vicki of Slytherin House
I thought this was very well-written! There were some excellent insights into Draco's character and some great lines. I only wish it were longer, especially since the end is such a cliffhanger of sorts... :)
Good job, I enjoyed reading it! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: Cliffhanger, eh? Never thought of that, though I see your point now that you mention it. It's only a short fic 'cos I've never written Draco before; I find it hard to like him, though I know he's more bark than bite. Even when he was been rescued by Harry & Co, intead of being grateful, he just bu**ered of, always thinking of number one. Mark of a coward, I suppose. But it was the scraps of humanity he showed when he couldn't kill Dumbledore, and when he couldn't quite admit to his Aunt Bella that the boy the Snatchers had captured was, in fact, Harry Potte, that made me try to explore his character a little. I'm afraid this little effort was all I could manage, though. Cool that you liked it! Ta muchly for the feedback, CbK.
I loved the scarlet letter allusion!
I have a great appreciation for people who write about characters in ways we never thought of. This was beautifully tragic! And I can look at the Malfoys in a new perspective. Good job!
Author's Response: Yeah, it was probably difficult for the Malfoys directly after the battle, and for a long time afterwards, even if Harry did speak up for Narcissa and/or Draco. Would be a nightmare to be born into their family after the war, given that they were probably the biggest social pariahs around for a good long time. Ta muchly for the feedback CbK