Hi there! I’m Soraya. I’m seventeen years old and am a proud Muslim British Bangladeshi. I live in East London and have loved reading and writing from a young age. I’m rather obsessed with Harry Potter (aren’t we all?), tea (not a surprise considering I’m a Brit) and good grammar. Recently, I've also got into the Supernatural fandom. After watching the first episode, I had already fallen head over heels in love with Sam Winchester, so it's no surprise that I am now a huge SPN fangirl as well as a Potterhead.
My writing has changed quite a bit over the years, and I think you'll probably notice that, the further down my author page you go, the more the quality seems to drop :P I started posting stories on here at the age of fourteen, and at nearly eighteen, I can see how much my writing has improved since those Dark Ages. So, for that reason, I would advise you stick to the more recent stuff, if you choose to read anything of mine.
Just so you know, these are posted firstly according to what kind of pairing, if any, is in the story, and then in chronological order in accordance to my own canon, not necessarily the order in which they were posted.
My first chaptered fic. It’s terribly written, but I still have a place in my heart for it because of how much fun it was to write. This story has now been deleted on MNFF, but if you really, really want to read it, you can still find it on FF.net and HPFF. (I advise you don't, though :P)
Second Childishness and Mere Oblivion (James/Lily)
Written for Round One (Major Characters) of Madam Pomfrey’s Character Clinic Triathlon, this one-shot is about James and Lily’s relationship getting rockier and rockier after they left Hogwarts, especially when Lily is faced with the trials of being a wife and motherhood. A little smutty.
My Love is Always Here (James/Lily)
This was a belated birthday present for the wonderful Gina/Gmariam, aka the queen of James/Lily. This is mostly about Lily dealing with becoming a mother for the first time and the problems (as well as the joys) that come with that.
There's an Answer (Remus/Tonks)
Written for Sophie/The owl for SPEW Summer Swap IV. Tonks is sent on an interesting baby Auror assignment to do with werewolves. Remus and a dangerous Muggle are thrown into the mix, with interesting results.
Left Behind (Remus/Tonks)
An expanded version of one of my LoveNotes, written for SPEW. It's a missing moment set between OOTP and HBP, where in my head canon Remus and Tonks have been together, in secret, for a few weeks already and Remus is then told to go on his werewolf mission. Slightly smutty.
One and Only (Remus/Tonks)
Written for the lovely Alex/Ithinkrabis2people in the Ravenclaw Christmas Drabble Exchange. This is a missing moment set just after Tonks’s outburst to Remus in the hospital wing at the end of HBP.
Out of My Life (Harry/Ginny)
My only AU (kind of). I tweaked a small part of canon in this -- basically, Harry actually said goodbye to Ginny properly when he broke up with her. Very angsty, and this is only up for sentimental reasons, as I wrote it during The Dark Ages (aka when I was fourteen).
A Different Kind of Magic (Harry/Ginny)
Written for the You’re Having My Baby challenge at SIYE. Ginny finds out she’s pregnant, but Harry receives the news before her and therefore has to tell his wife. This was my first ever story at MNFF. It was written when I was thirteen, and it definitely shows.
A Different Kind of Magic 2: Parenthood (Harry/Ginny)
A sequel, obviously, to A Different Kind of Magic. Ginny goes into labour, and both Harry and Ginny realise what it means to be parents. Again, this was written from Back in the Days.
The Caustic Ticking of the Clock (Rowena/Helga)
Written for the Great Hall Cotillion, this story is my only Founders story so far, and it’s about Rowena and Helga’s secret relationship. I am proud of this one, which doesn’t usually happen :)
Catching Fire (James/Sirius)
This was written for SPEW 007. My prompt was “Embers”, and it’s set just after Remus’s second transformation with the Marauders. James is badly injured, and he and Sirius realise, inadvertently, that they might just have feelings for each other. I like the pairing but still think the story needs work. One day I will go back and edit.
Flicker and Fail (Katie/Leanne)
This was written forSecret SPEW, and my recipient was the absolutely fabulous Alex/welshdevondragon. It’s my take on Leanne and Katie’s relationship from way before they were even at Hogwarts as well as what eventually happens to Katie in HBP, when she was cursed.
Skinny Love (Louis/Lily)
Written for the 2013 Great Hall Cotillion. Set during Teddy and Victoire's wedding, Louis helps Lily come to terms with her bulimia. This one was pretty difficult to write.
Blood and Roses (Scorpius/Rose, Scorpius/Dominique, Dominique/OC)
Written for the Great Hall Mysterious Maychallenge, this was my first Next Generation fic about Scorpius, mostly, and the trials he faces after his daughter is murdered.
Broken Glass (Louis/Lily)
This is the story of when Loulily really began. After the deaths of his immediate family, Louis is finding it hard to cope, even six months later. Lily somehow helps. It’s a little smutty. I’m proud of this one, too :)
The Highway of Regret (Scorpius/Lily, Scorpius/Rose, Louis/Lily)
Also written for the Great Hall Cotillion. It’s my one and only Scily. This is all about secret relationships and mistakes people make. Lily’s angry at Louis, and Scorpius has just broken up with Rose; when Lily gets drunk in the pub, things... happen. :P
I Will Lay Down My Heart (Albus/Rose, Scorpius/Rose)
Written for Round Two (Minor Characters) of Madam Pomfrey’s Character Clinic Triathlon. Albus has been in love with Rose for years, but what happened with them when they were younger has put a dent in their relationship. It doesn’t help that Rose is actually in love with Scorpius, either. This is smutty too.
One More Night (Albus/Rose, Rose/Scorpius)
Companion piece to I Will Lay Down My Heart. This goes into more detail about Rose and Albus's changing relationship as well as the aftermath of the events in said companion story. Probably the smuttiest thing on my page. :D Written for the Great Hall Cotillion 2013.
This was written for the Great Hall-iday challenge for the Operation: Mistletoe prompt, and this was where my love for Loulily began.
This is about how five men in Potterverse dealt with remorse in different ways.
This poem is about how Remus feels about Sirius (not slashy, btw).
Written for the Magic in Music challenge over inPoetry, Anyone? This was set to the track “Obliviate” in DH1 and is about Hermione modifying her parents’ memories.
Written for the Goodbyechallenge in Poetry, Anyone? This was about saying goodbye, and how difficult it could be.
After All This Time
Written for the Deathly Hallows challenge inPoetry, Anyone?. I ship unrequited Snape/Lily, and this is probably the only time Snape will be on my author page, lol.
Written for the MC Kreacher challenge inPoetry, Anyone? This was written from the POV of Bill Weasley after his wife’s death.
Written for the Great Bannermakers’ Hallchallenge. The banner I picked had Merope Gaunt on it, and it’s probably my darkest story; it’s definitely the only one to have a dubious consent warning. It’s about, as you might guess, the abuse Merope suffered from her father and brother.
In Care (Marlene/OC)
Marlene McKinnon, as a care kid, eventually falls in love with another care kid, Jamal Olawumi. But he's a Muggle, and keeping her world secret proves difficult. This is definitely a story I would like to revisit and tidy up.
Just Across the Bar (Sirius/Rosmerta)
Sirius is just about of age, but obviously Rosmerta has misgivings about having feelings for Sirius, who is still a student. Written for the 2013 Great Hall Cotillion and also smutty.
Written for SPEW 007. My prompt was “Juggling”, and it’s just a silly piece of dialogue-only banter between Remus and Sirius. Sirius realises Remus likes Tonks, and he tries to persuade Remus to act on his feelings.
Hanging by a Thread (Katie/Oliver)
Written for the lovely Jess/ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor for Secret SPEW VII. Katie is grieving and drowning her sorrows in alcohol and Oliver is trying his best to save Muggles, while trying also to bury feelings for Katie that he thought he had long since forgotten about. There is also, surprise surprise, some smut in this.
And that’s it! Along with being a moderator, I’m also a member of SPEWand SBBC. I hope to see you around on the forums; feel free to contact me via PM or review if you have any questions or comments about my stories!
You know, I was very pleased to see that you’d written a Bill/Fleur fic. Having read Acorns (which was a lovely story; I believe it was one of the first stories I’d read on the site, actually), I’ve always wanted to read more of this pairing by you, because you write it so well. And I think, in this story, you took it to a whole new level, so it’s a shame it hasn’t got as many reviews as some of your other works, because this is definitely another story of yours that is going on my favourites list.
Okay, I will admit that I was only convinced of Bill/Fleur when I reached the end of HBP, so I loved your take on the pairing before their big moment, or, rather, Fleur’s big moment regarding looks, and how she doesn’t care about them. I’ve always wondered exactly how Bill and Fleur met and got together, and I do think part of it was to do with looks. Bill and Fleur were both good-looking people, and I think your description of them was excellent. My favourite line was definitely this one: His eyes are blue, like hers, except not at all the same. Hers, she’s been told, sparkle like ice diamonds, arctic blue. His are darker, warm - if that is possible for a cold colour. They brim with laughter and tease with promise.
The contrast between them even there, so early on in the story, is wonderful, and it shows, perhaps, how well they complement each other. It also makes the whole concept of love at first sight believable. On that subject, I thought the premise of the story was a really interesting one, especially considering your opinions about love at first sight. I’ve never been one to be convinced at that, so it was a great idea to explore, and I think you did it well. I liked the use of the expression “coup de foudre” (and I’m glad you provided the translation, because even though I’m learning French, I wouldn’t have understood it at first) especially considering everyone’s reactions to Fleur in canon, how they were starstruck by her.
I also thought that their attraction to each other was made more plausible because their relationship didn't start particularly smoothly. The awkwardness in the restaurant was written very well, and I couldn’t help but feel very sorry for Bill for having chosen a bad place to eat, and Fleur, too. But I also liked how that situation was turned around and how it became a good thing in the end, for them, especially when they kissed. That was very sweet, not to mention romantic :)
I thought the style in which this was written, from beginning to end, was very good. One thing I loved was the use of the short sentences at the start to describe how they first met, with the repetition of “that look”. It worked really well, and it firmly established the foundations of their relationship. Also, I know you’re not always keen on present tense, but it was the perfect choice here. It kept me in the moment with both Bill and Fleur, and it helped maintain the story’s pace -- you covered a lot of ground here, I think, in not that many words, and yet not once was I confused, and not once did it drag or seem too fast either.
The characterisation of Fleur was simply excellent. Fleur, sadly, is one of the most abused characters in the fandom, and possibly in canon too. She’s seen as a girl who is merely pretty, and I liked that you changed that around completely here. Yes, she’s still beautiful, but you added a lot more substance to her character. For example, when Bill flicks the steak at her, she laughs, whereas I would have expected her to be annoyed and possibly just leave there and then. I think a moment like that threw me off a little, but in a good way -- it kind of reminded me that Fleur is human, which she obviously is, despite her looks :) Oh, and I also thought you wrote her accent very well. You did a great job on that without overdoing it, and I think that’s one of the most difficult things about writing Fleur sometimes. As well as that, I think Fleur’s refusal to use her Veela charm on Bill was interesting, and it showed, again, that she was a normal person, and a genuine one at that, because she wanted her relationship with Bill to actually last.
I really liked Bill’s characterisation too -- what I think is the best about him is that he’s not bothered about being particularly romantic, what with the fish and chips, and his impromptu proposal. But I think it works, too, because romantic gestures can go horribly over the top, and you kept it from getting to that stage, in my opinion. And the ending, when Bill says that he doesn’t love Fleur and doesn’t want to marry her, is heartbreaking. In HBP, when I read that scene, Bill was unconscious, so I always did want to know what his reaction to his attack would be. And, once again, his characterisation was spot-on; he seems like the noble sort of person who would try and protect Fleur by trying to reject her (like Remus). But, unlike Remus, I’m glad that Bill didn't go through with that and married Fleur anyway, because -- especially after reading this story -- Bill and Fleur make a beautiful couple.
So, as you can tell, I really enjoyed reading this. I think you did a wonderful job with this story, and it’s definitely a strong contender for at least one award (maybe Best Canon Couple?), so good luck in the challenge.
Bon anniversaire, mon amie!
Alexxxxxx. I think you know how much I hearted the original, but I love the expanded one even more :D
It was gorgeous and romantic and still kind of angsty and rather hot as well and I just loved it as you can see by the complete lack of commas lol. And the progression of their relationship was beautifully written and I liked that Katie was chasing Leanne and not the other way round hehe.
Author's Response: Sorayaaa--yes, I did think the ZOMG (even though I've been meaning to ask someone what the Z stands for in that for ages) comment meant that you liked it. I'm glad you like the expanded version more--would be kind of awkward if you preferred the drabble. Anyway, thanks again--I hope my comma errors didn't offend you too much...thanks so much for reviewing :) Alex
A photograph and a slew of memories were all that remained of Remus Lupin's schoolboy romance with Marlene McKinnon. But she was gone, and he gagged on all the things he never said.
This story is dedicated to the gorgeous and always-inspiring Equinox Chick/Carole/Croll of the Dungeon. May your minions never stray in their worship of you. It was inspired by a rather gorgeous song by The Cure, called Pictures of You.
This story has been nominated for a 2012 Quicksilver Quill Award: Best Marauder Era.
Bonjour, Reine de SPEW :)
It’s been a while since I’ve read anything by you, so it was lovely having something of yours on my TBR list for once. And, wow, I was really impressed with this piece, for several reasons.
Firstly, I think Remus/Marlene is a wonderful pairing, partly because it’s pre-Remus/Tonks and still fully canon compliant (and your take on the pairing was another excellent one) but also because Remus’s reluctance to be with Tonks later on is understood more. Clearly, he had experienced a similar problem with someone else before Tonks, and it explains, also, why Remus seized the opportunity with Tonks in HBP -- because he knew that he missed the chance with Marlene. I think that was such a powerful aspect of his character to explore, and it was done incredibly well. I also know you’re not a huge fan of Marauder Era, so this is even more impressive, in my opinion, because the characterisation throughout was just stellar.
Second, we don’t know much about Marlene from canon, so I liked that you drew from that and characterised her really well, firstly by her actions and her ideals (which we know, partially, because she was in the Order and therefore cared about what was right) but by her description. I think it was necessary, because Marlene is essentially an OC in terms of characterisation. I find, usually, with your writing, that you don’t linger on description much, so it was a nice change to read more description in this one at the beginning. And it was beautifully and poetically written, right from the start of the story -- I got a really vivid image of Marlene, which was important because, of course, Remus remembers her vividly too.
I also loved the style in which this story is written -- I know you’re not a fan of present tense, but if I didn’t know your preferences when writing, I would never be able to guess that you’ve stepped out of your comfort zone at all, because it was written so effortlessly that it’s impossible to tell that you and present tense aren’t best friends. Present tense was definitely the right choice here, because it really made me feel in the moment, and there’s also something ominous about it which suited the mood of the story perfectly.
The flashbacks were also gut-wrenching, in that they showed when Remus and Marlene were happy, and that just added to the sad tone in the piece. The part at the end when Marlene proposed to Remus was gorgeously done, and I really liked that she was not a traditionalist in that respect. The shifts back to the past and then the present again were flawlessly done, and not once were they jarring, or abrupt. I think the non-linear structure here worked really well; it’s amazing how many memories one can get from just a photo, and the image of Remus lying in his bed and looking at the picture of him and Marlene is so powerful, and it really emphasises the gloominess Remus feels, especially when he tears the photo in two.
Finally, I think the story flowed really well. It is a relatively short one-shot, but it was the perfect length, I think, and there was a lot of emotion packed in for such a short piece, which I really liked, especially with the non-chronological way in which the story was written. You explored a lot of Remus’s feelings throughout -- love, of course, but also, anger (when Remus discovered the Dark Mark above Marlene’s body) which was executed really well, and it was perfectly in character when he obliterated it with his wand. That was a really good scene, and it emphasised how badly Remus was affected by Marlene’s death, and how much he loved her.
So, overall, Jess, this was a wonderfully-written and poignant story, even more so because it’s not your usual style or era, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Well done :)
Sorry it's taken epically long to respond, but it never fails that I don't have the proper words to respond to a SPEW review. /bad Monarch
Somehow, in my head, Remus/Marlene is totally canon. Remus is the one Marauder I genuinely don't dislike, but he is, to me, the most tragic. Peter was thought to be dead, James *was* dead, and Sirius had supposedly committed both crimes. Remus was left with the burden of knowledge that he had not been able to stop any of it. Add his furry little problem, and he is the person I would least want to be between 1981 and 1993. He went at it all alone, but there was only one conceivable reason why he would tackle such a difficult life alone, and that is because he wasn't alone and it didn't work out well.
And as for Marlene, I thought it was important for the reader to see her as Remus saw her at that moment, idyllically pretty and sweet to a fault. Naturally, this isn't the sum of what she was. At this moment in time, though, she was a flawless flower that Remus thought that he destroyed because of what he was and ultimately lived with that burden. To see her as anything else after she had just been buried would've been abominable to Remus. He loved her too much to let himself love her. Noble git. >.>
Present tense just ended up being a necessity. In terms of functionality, it would've been more awkward using flashbacks if all of it had been in past tense, rather than having a present that drifted into memories. It just seemed the logical choice. However, using first person present tense (which I've done once before) would've melted my brain. I think I don't have a POV I dislike more other than second person anything. I just picked what felt the best whilst writing, and weirdly enough, that was it, hehe.
Speaking of the memories/flashbacks, I really had to reign myself in while writing those so they didn't overtake the rest of the story completely. I felt it was more important to show Remus's heartbreak and use the memories to demonstrate why that is, rather than make the story about the flashbacks and using the present tense bits to mark their sad ending. That probably doesn't make any sense, but there ya go.
I had a really strong image of the picture, and that was what I wrote the story around. There is something really poignant about the image of a photograph being ripped, and I thought it fitting that not even magic could put it back together properly. And with it being likely the last photograph left of Marlene, as her house had been burned down, it kind of has a finality to it in that respect, especially for Remus.
As for the length of the story, I think a longer story might've ended up being too draining, both for me and the reader, or worse, run the risk of rambling rather than being emotive. I like to think that those 1100 something words say more than I probably could've done in 5000 writing it differently. It's probably pretentious to say that, but that's me for you, lol.
I think Remus obliterating the Dark Mark was probably my favourite thing to write. His rage was almost palpable in my brain, and I'm reasonably confident that it translated well onto the page. To be honest, I had the image of the HBP film where the students all held up their wands after Dumbledore died, but I wanted it to be the antithesis of that. Remus rarely loses his temper, but everyone has a breaking point. That, to me, was his.
That breaking point was very important to his future relationship with Tonks. Not even someone afflicted with lycanthropy could cut himself off from possible romance as solidly as Remus did. In the first war, he thought it was too much to overcome and he lost a chance at happiness because the dark times they lived in took Marlene away. But when Tonks came along, Remus refused to let himself feel that way again. I think he eventually realised that he couldn't stop himself from feeling the way he did no matter how hard he tried, so he decided to take happiness where he could get it, because things were even worse than they had been during the first war...and we know how that turned out. It's better to die regretting things you've done than die regretting things you didn't do.
All in all, if I were to write a Marauder story, this kind, with non J/L and all those characters that bore me, this is it. There are so many good characters to implement, and I prefer to give the ones who don't have a story a life of their own. Like Marlene. And maybe read through the lines a bit about Remus and his travails with romance. And so forth.
Anyway, I will shut up now. This was an excellent review, almost to the point where it was exceedingly difficult to respond in a manner fitting its quality. I fear I have failed, but thank you for visiting and reading this story. It's the best thing I've written of late, maybe save for Carole's birthday story. I appreciate the visit, and have a lovely evening. :D
Helloooooo Natalieeeeeee. Again :D
I think you've discussed this fic a lot on the LS, so it was nice to finally read it :) And, once again, even though this prologue is really short, you've drawn me in already. I loved how you drew on what we know about Krum from canon (or cannon :P) about him swimming even in January, and there's something quite dark and foreboding about him swimming in the black river. Excellent imagery there, Nat.
A couple of things -- "reveled" should be "revelled" and I think "degrees Celsius" makes more sense than "degree Celcius".
But they're very minor points. All in all, I loved this, and I'm only 500 words in, lol. Onwards and upwards! (To the next chapter in other words lol.)
Author's Response: I am such an a******! >.< I completely forgot about responding to these reviews :/ First of all, thanks for catching those errors! I've edited the draft. Secondly, thanks for taking the time to read and review! :D
ooooooooooooooooooh. Natalie, this was fab. And I've still got two chapters to go, yippeeeeee! :D
I think you created a lovely chemistry between Gabrielle and Krum in this. I mean, things were awkward to begin with, but I liked how their relationship progressed as the chapter went on. I *was* wondering why Krum didn't want to be seen with Gabrielle myself, so it was good that he explained himself. I suppose it kind of makes sense, and I loved this line: “I will kiss you in front of the cameramen if you want.”
Hehehehhe, that just was so funny. And I loved Monsieur Melancolique -- hilarious :D My form tutor is a French teacher so next time he annoys me, I'll just call him that :P
Finally, I loved your characterisation of Gabrielle -- in canon, we see her as a rather immature girl but who is also quite open about her crush on Harry. I liked how you built on that and made her quite forward.
Anyway, onto the next chapter!
Author's Response: Hahaha! Credit for Melancolique goes to Croll. I'm happy to know you enjoyed the chapter and characterisation.
Hmmmm. Natalie, I'm not really sure what to say (in a good way). So, what, Gabby's dead? If so, :( I was growing quite fond of her, and I think you did a great job in depicting how their relationship developed at the beginning.
And I knew somethign was up about the article. there was no way Gabrielle would actually say all of that, but I think would be easy for Krum to not see that.
Okay, I shall continue my spammage in the last chapter because I'm now rambling about nothing, lol.
Author's Response: The article was one of those things which the reader should be dubious about but the character shouldn't; it's good to know it worked. :D I was getting quite fond of writing her. However, I'd always planned for her to die and I had to stick to it. :/
Ahhh, I like the girl :) She's very noble and rather gallant, and I love her character. Granted, I'm still upset that Gabrielle died, but it's also nice to know Krum found love in the end, and that he didn't die.
While I loved the chemistry between Gabrielle and Krum, I somehow don't think it would have worked between them. They were too similar, in some ways, and I think maybe the fact that their relationship would always be in the limelight if they were together might have been something that could have pushed them apart too.
Anyway, this is just becoming incoherent mush so I'll stop here. Great story, Nat :D
Author's Response: Ideally, I'd have either drawn out the story and killed Krum in the end or forced myself to let Gabrielle live and separate them after some time. But I am JKR's slave. -sigh- You're right about Krum and Gabrielle's relationship too. There are quite a few factors why it wouldn't have worked out. They spent such a short time together, and Krum is so idealistic, which is why I think he plummeted into depression.
Hahahahaa. Croll, I loved this! You've discussed your Zacmac before so it was nice actually reading it and seeing for myself how fabulously funny and well-written it was :D
I loved the banter between the boys, and the drunken dialogue (I bet you can understand why I like that :P). I really liked Cormac's characterisation, and I think it ties in perfectly with canon -- I mean, only an idiot, and a daring one at that, would be stupid enough to eat a pound of Doxy eggs for a bet. So yes. Very well done there. I loved how Cormac was determined to snog whoever went through the door even if it was to a bloke, and as much as I don't like Zach as a character, I think you did a great job of his characterisation too.
I really liked how their relationship progressed, and the jobs they both had -- Cormac as a journaist and Zach as a player. I think that worked really well. great choice there.
Great story, Carole, and one that made me laugh lotsly :D
Author's Response: Okay, when Ariana suggested this, I immediately dismissed it because it seemed too ludicrous and I was after something deep and meaningful. But then I went to sleep and when I woke up I remembered Cormac and the Doxy eggs. That was my hook into the story and how their first encounter would go because there is no way in merry hell that Cormac Mclaggen would ever admit he was gay or make the first move on someone without a dare or copious amounts of alcohol. He's too aggressively male for that. Then the story took hold and obsessed me for a while. I remembered Zach was the Captain of Hufflepuff and stepping into Cedric's Quidditch boots must have been incredibly hard.
Not sure you wanted all that background, but hahahahahhahahahah - you have it now :D
Thank you again ~Carole~
Alex, this was beautiful. Ahhhhhh. The Grangers' relationship is definitely one I find intriguing, and I think you wrote it excellently. I liked the idea of them meeting at uni, and how Bea stopped swearing because of Stephen (if only that could happen for me, lol).
And I never would have guessed that you haven't been to Melbourne before. The description of the scenery was very nicely done, and I liked the reaction Bea had to Australia's beaches and so on -- especially comparing it with Cornwall's. And I loved the ending, and how you brought out their emotions and how lost they both felt so well.
The only thing I can pull you up on, really, is that Hermione cast a charm convincing her parents that they would become Wendell and Monica Wilkins, so either those were their real first names or they were called something completely different and Hermione changed their names. I think the latter is more likely, for security purposes. Just something I thought I'd point out -- obviously you don;t have to change it.
Lovely story, Alex :D
Author's Response: Sorayaa!!! Thank you :) I was rather pleased with this story, and am so glad that you liked it. Ha, meet someone as sweet as Stephen or stop swearing :p
Hannah and Bob and google streetview helped :) I love embedding the setting into the story, so am glad you appreciated it/ enjoyed it.
I've already told you about Monica and Wendell--I made up an excuse, and put it in the AN, but thank you for pointing it out. This is one of my favourites of the stories I wrote, so I'm glad you liked it and thank you for your lovely review :) Alex
This is AcaciaCarter of Hufflepuff, writing for the Great Hall Cotillion of 2012.
Oooooooooh, Jamie, this was fab! I've only ever read one other Percy/Audrey (by Alex, if you're interested -- When The Weather Turned Fine) so this is still fairly new territory for me in terms of the pairing anyway. But you did a really good job with it. I liked your characterisation of Percy, how he was still uptight and too rule-abiding for his own good, and that Audrey loosened him up a bit.
One thing I wasn't entirely sure about was the use of italics for the flashbacks. I mean, it's okay using them when it's only a relatively small part of the story, but I think as long as you have dates/times plus line breaks, I don't see why you need to use italics on top of that. It does kind of wreak my eyesight a little, lol. It's just because you italicised rather large chunks of the text, that's all. So that's something worth thinking about, though it's entirely up to you.
I liked how it ended. I really liked Audrey as a character, how she was rather business-like but not as bound by rules as Percy was. They complement each other very well, I think.
Anyway, great story, Jamie :D
ZOMG. That was AMAZINGGGGGGGGGGG.
Just... gahhh, I don't even know what to say! Carole, I've missed reading your Marauder Era stories, and I think this was a beautiful one. I just loved your characterisation of Sirius and Benjy -- especially with how snarky Benjy was, lol, and how hot Sirius was, hahahaha.
Also, I think you packed a lot of emotion into this story. There was humour, with Benjy putting Sirius in his place, and romance, and angst, too, not just on Benjy's part but on Sirius's as well. Octavia is a bit of a byotch, imo, leading poor Sirius on like that :-/
I loved your choice of POV and tense. Present tense is rather subjective, but it worked perfectly here, really made me feel in the moment. And I thought the way it was structured was so very clever and logical. It's different from what I usually read from you in that respect, and it worked perfectly.
Wonderful, wonderful story, Carole, and sorry for gushing. Just... wow. :D
Author's Response: Thank youuuuuuu
,br> You know, I was so unsure about this story. I knew I liked it, but wasn;t sure how it would go down so I am incredibly pleased with the reception it's received. Also, it turned out VERY differently from my initial plan which was to be a brief encounter after a mission and some hot m/m action. Sirius, however, wasn't playing ball and I thought it needed to be a touch deeper. So, he might be gay or straight, but really he's not attached to anyone except James and to a lesser extent Lily, Remus and Peter. However, he does get close to Benjy. Ihated killing Benjy - darn canon!
Present tense. Yes, it's sadly addictive. I hated it and then loved it and then cursed it again when I was writing Dean/Ginny and it kept appearing - ha!
Thank you again for this review and all the others. Much appreciated. ~Carole~
Sorry it’s taken so long to review D: I’ve been so busy with schoolwork and such. Apologies.
Anyway, this is an interesting story! I’ve seen Draco redeemed in quite a few fics, and I agree that he wasn’t evil as such. After all, there were many moments in canon when he was a better person than I thought he would. And the fact that Harry saved Draco’s life more than once and Draco saved his, too, definitely convinced me that Draco was worthy of redemption. I think you drew on that very well, humanising him. I love the title, how it’s basically Draco looking back on his life. The piece is very reflective in nature, which is different from what I’m used to, but I think you did a good job of it :)
I thought the use of first person was appropriate -- it made the story a lot more personal, as his recollections are pretty personal and emotional, too. I felt a lot closer to Draco and could feel what he was feeling. Okay, I’ll admit I’m not a fan of Dramione at all, but I felt it was quite convincing because of the first person. I do think that you could have had more of a physical attraction to her -- as in, if you actually described Hermione in terms of looks, it might have been more believable, because then at least we could see why he liked her. Another way in which I find romance more convincing is by dialogue. The whole story was told rather than shown, and I would have liked to see some actual dialogue between Draco and Hermione for me to think Draco being in love with her was really believable. I also would have liked to see Draco’s reasoning for being so horrible to Hermione in canon; surely if he fancied her, he would have been nicer to her? And wouldn’t he have considered the fact that she was a Muggleborn and could therefore never really be welcome in Malfoy Manor? In other words, that could have done with some expansion.
However, I did like the connection with the dragons. I thought it was fitting that he would be fascinated by them given his own name, and it makes sense that he then snitched on Harry, Ron and Hermione about Norbert. I liked that you mentioned the dragons at the end, too -- it really brought the story full circle, which I think is really important in reflective pieces like this one. On the whole, I really liked Draco’s characterisation throughout, particularly at the beginning when his mother told him stories -- there was something lovely and childlike about him that was great to read. And, as another reviewer said, you made him likable but not quite someone I would admire. The ending was also wonderful -- again, it was very much introspective, and it really made it clear that Draco wanted redemption and that he was a better person than others perceived him to be.
So overall, BP, this was a great fic. :) Ooh, one thing I think is worth mentioning -- I liked the use of first person, but I would love to see some other POVs from you, too. I may be wrong, but it does seem to be the POV you use the most, and it seems to be the one you’re most comfortable with. It would be great to see third person by you, too, as I think it would really benefit you as a writer to try things that may be out of your comfort zone. This isn’t criticism, as such, since I think this story worked best in first person, but maybe if you experimented a bit with styles, it could help your growth as a writer.
Author's Response: Soraya, I am ridiculously sorry: I should’ve replied to this yonks ago. I got caught up in school and completely forgot that this existed. The first person thing is completely true - all of my fics on MMNF are in first person – and I completely agree that it would be lovely to see me write in third person (or even second person if that would even be feasible for me) and I will hopefully finish a couple of third person WIPs soon (after I finish another first person WIP…). Thank you for your comment on the Dramione bit. I’m really glad you didn’t think that it was completely thrown in, as this fic was originally rejected because the moderator felt that the whole Dramione thing was thrown in. I completely agree that it needed more thinking through. I’m also glad the dragon connection appealed: that was something I added after the fic was rejected. :) Thank you for leaving me such a lovely review; I'm glad you enjoyed the fic and I’m sorry that it’s taken me so long to write you such a measly reply, BP
Ooooooh, Spire, this was lovely! It's so unfair that this hasn't got any reviews yet, because I thought it was fab and bittersweet and beautiful.
Firstly, what a wonderful rarepair! I never would have thought that Poppy would be Marauder Era age, but because it's never really mentioned how old she is in canon (I don't think so anyway) I suppose you have free reign in that respect. And though the characters in this pairing are rather random, I think you created lovely chemistry between them right from the very beginning when he proposes to her. That was so sweet, and a great way of starting the story, with dialogue.
And I thought the way they were slowly pushed apart by war was so sad and beautifully done. I couldn't help but wince every time a death was mentioned, especially the McKinnons. The fact that Maria was pregnant at the time only makes it more heart-wrenching for me.
Anyway, I hope you get more reviews for this, Spire, because it truly is a fantastic story. See you in, RAC, and good luck in the challenge!
Author's Response: Ahhh, thank you for the review! I really enjoyed writing this (I haven't written ff in ages and this is a bit different to my norm) so I'm pleased you liked it :) xx
Ooooooh, Carole, I enjoyed this :) Mind you, I'm not usually into Dean/Ginny, and in fact, I don't think I've ever read one before, so this was a first :D And I think, as ever with your writing, you wrote it very well. I liked the initial set-up of the story, and the Quidditchness of it all.
Ugh, I hate Gloria. What a pervy cow, man. I don't blame Dean for trying to stay away from her, lol. Though I am wondering why she'd give him such good tickets for the game -- unless it's her attempt to win him over or something? In that case, it's pretty pathetic >.< She is rather creepy, but I liked how you didn't make things completely rosy for Dean either.
I'd like to see where this goes. Next chapterrrrrrrrr!
Author's Response: II think Gloria just likes scaring him - hahahahahahahhahaha. She gave him tickets because she couldn't use them and she was pleased he'd pushed the application through. I think she'd like to get closer to Dean, but she's not going to force herself on anyone.
It's odd how many fics there are where Harry is with Hermione or someone else, and yet no one pairs Ginny up with anyone - except in vague Luna femmeslash which never quite works for me.
,br> Thank you for reviewing. ~Carole~
Carole, you are killing me here. WHYYYYY?
For about two years, Harry/Ginny was my OTP. And now you've killed it completely because this is just so convincing for me and it makes Harry/Ginny look so unconvincing, especially the bit about Ginny being fifteen and harbouring the crush since she was ten. You're right, or rather, she's right.
You wrote drunk!Ginny so well (well, you would, given it's... you :D) and I think you managed to create wonderful chemistry between Ginny and Dean with her loosening up because of the drink and all. I do love Grace too -- I think she sounds really sweet, and I so agree with her about footie. Just sayin'.
Anyway, final chapter now!
Author's Response: I loved writing the drunk bits - heheheheh - I can get away with repeating things like 'lovely' which is a lovely word. Grace I've used before and Gary they're my canon for Dean. Grace was about 17 when she had Dean *sigh*.
I do still ship Harry/Ginny but there has always been a part of me that is uneasy about her having this crush on him for so long and it all working out happily ever after (although I love the NG kids) but that wouldn;t necessarily mean she'd end up back with Dean. (Actually I have a femmeslash in mind for her - heheheheheheheheheh)
Thank you for the review (I have altered a bit in the last chapter, btw, thanks to your advice.) ~Carole~
Ooooooh, Carole, I loved how this ended :D It was just so... awwww. And that's coming from someone who just an hour ago despised this ship, so that's a huge achievement imo.
One thing I wasn't entirely sure about -- it was a bit rushed, how quickly they had sex and were suddenly together. I mean, it just happened a bit too quickly, and I'd have liked to know what Harry's reaction to it was and everything. I know it's from Dean's POV but still, I would have liked to know what Harry thought of it all. Maybe it's just the Harry/Ginny in me, lol. But I think the story would have worked better if you slowed things down a notch, although I completely understand that the word limit probably held you back a bit.
But I still thoroughly enjoyed this, and I think it was a wonderful story. Well done, Carole :D
Author's Response: I agree that it was a tad rushed towards the end. There's supposed to be a line somewhere marking the passage of time between their time at his house and then going to Hogsmeade - so I should probably edit something in - which I shall get on to ... very soon. I don;t think i'm going to write about Harry's reaction, though. I think the fact that he's attending the leaving party and that they can clearly talk about him shows he's okay with it. It could have made a good moment, but I fear it would have made me spiral with the word count, so that was a deliberate decision.
I'm not sure how serious I am about the ship because if I throw myself behind it, then High dies :(
Thank you so much for the reviewwwwww ~Carole~
Oooooh, Natalie, this was lovely :) What a wonderful pairing to pick in the first place. Nicholas Flamel has always been a character who has fascinated me immensely, and I think you did a wonderful job of fleshing him and Perenelle out in this story, despite its shortness.
I think you explored their characters really well, particularly Perenelle at the beginning. It was a really interesting comparison to use, with numbers, and it's so true as well. (Obviously I would say that -- I am, after all, a maths geek :P)
Finally, I liked how Nicholas was poor and Perenelle was rich, and how they still stayed together despite all that. I think that's what made this story really original, with details like that.
Excellently written, Natalie :)
Author's Response: Nicholas and Perenelle fascinate me too! Actually, eternal life as a concept is a vastly interesting subject. Ha! I'm glad you liked the math-ness. :D And also the characterisation! Thanks for reading and reviewing! Really made my day.
This is Acacia Carter of Hufflepuff writing (again) for the Inaugural Great Hall Cotillion of 2012.
Aww, Jamie, this was sweet :) I feel sorry for Colin, and I get what you mean when you angsted about being in a thirteen-year-old's brain, lol. You had nothing to worry about, though, because you pulled off Colin's voice (in third person but still) and mindset so well in this story.
And I felt so sorry for Colin. Poor him :( First he works up the courage to ask Ginny out, and then Ginny says yes, then Neville asks Ginny and Colin has to face the heartbreak of that too :'( It's sad on him, and it's even sadder that he died in the battle of Hogwarts.
One thing I was wondering about -- I think it would be interesting to expand on Ginny's feelings by the end. Because Ginny's the one who snogs him, and it is a little... out of the blue, because all this time, she doesn't really seem to like him in that way. So yeah, that was something I was a little unsure about.
But still, this was a great story, so well done! :D
Hehehe. Carole, this story just made me LOL so much. You got into Mafalda's head so well here, and I loved the voice you gave her. It's a little daft, but in a nice way hehe.
And I felt sorry for Mafalda -- after all of Arthur's blunders, she still liked him, only to find out that he and Molly eloped :( It's sad on her, though there's no way they would have worked really. I thought it was interesting how Mafalda viewed Molly as well, how she thought Molly was "simpering" (and the Molly I remember from canon is anything but). Just shows how jealous Mafalda is I suppose.
Anyway, this story just made me laugh so much, Carole, and I really enjoyed it :D
Author's Response: Thank yoiuuuu. I'm glad you picked up on the Molly simpering bit because you're quite right. Molly wouldn't simper at all, but in Mafalda's eyes she not only simpers, but she's 'fast' - hahahahahahahah.
Yes, poor Mafalda, but we all know Arthur only loves one woman. ~Carole~
OOooooh, Natalie, I'd like to see where this goes! I think you've set up the scene really well here, and you've established Eileen's character excellently.
And, awww, the boy she used to babysit sounds so sweet. And cute. :D I can't say much more because there isn't a lot to comment on, but, as I said, I'd like to see where this goes. I hope you can update soooooooon :)
Author's Response: :D I can't wait to write more, honestly! Thank you for reviewing. :) It's a huge motivation.