Hi, M. Your story is skillfully written, the sentences are fluid, and the word choices are good. The background information is woven smoothly into the narrative, so that even readers like me who haven’t read your other stories about Draco and Hermione can get the picture.
From your statement about Draco’s parents having endured an entire year of “new”, beginning I suppose after the Battle of Hogwarts, this story must be set in December of 1999. And if Draco and Hermione went back to Hogwarts for that “claustrophobic eighth year”, they must have left Hogwarts and started living independently only six months ago. Do I have the timeline correct? I got the feeling from your story that it had been longer than that.
But no mind. It is good to see the two of them making up and hopefully learning more about getting along. I will confess that it concerns me a little when I see stories of Hermione and her male partner, be it Ron or Draco or whoever, continuing the behavior pattern of continual fights, arguments, and stand-offs, because I wonder if they will continue this behavior in the presence of any children they may have someday. Maybe the adult participants will kiss and make up eventually, but witnessing the constant fighting can be traumatic and damaging to the children who must grow up in this atmosphere. Perhaps someday someone should write a story in which Hermione and her male partner come to this realization and take a vow to make a conscious change.
Thank you for writing!
Author's Response: Hi Vicki!
I'm glad you were able to get into my story, and that my writing style worked for you. There's nothing worse than diving into a story and having to pause every other sentence to figure out how it should be read. To be very honest, I hadn't much considered the timeline (shame on me!), but your logic seems pretty spot-on. I did intend them to be living on their own for a bit longer than six months. Good catch, and thanks for pointing it out!
I agree with your concerns regarding Hermione and Draco's (or Ron's, etc.) fights, but I think that, as they mature together as a couple, these spats will die down. Eventually, they'll be able to resolve their conflicts without needing to argue. Or, if an argument is unavoidable, they'll do it away from the sensitive ears of their children. I'm sure there is a fic or two that deals with this moment of clarity, but I haven't found it yet. ;)
Thanks so much for reading and leaving such a wonderful, detailed review!!