I am a recent member of the Harry Potter fandom, but I have always had a passion for the written word, and I hope to fulfill it here. I live in a relatively boring corner of Idaho, and I like Kokanee and a good book!
So, I suppose you're wondering what's up with my username. Even if you're not, this is how that happened. No, I was not aspiring to be a Gryffindor. I can't think of any house to which I would belong less than Gryffindor, in fact. It was a moment of clarity that I got while I was battling with myself about whether I should want to be Sorted into Gryffindor to be like Harry or to be Sorted elsewhere and follow my own path. I thought it to be much like the contemplative scene in Hamlet when he weighed taking his own life. I'm not trying to be melodramatic. That's simply is what popped into my head when I was trying to sign up to leave a review. :D
Any questions or comments about my work? Please shoot me an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org — I'd love to hear from you!
Summary: A night to forget everything else; a night to remember.
Dedicated to Harry/Ginny.
Aww, you already know that I love this poem, but I know how much reviews kick ass, so I'm going to exalt you anyway.
Long, tapered fingers,
Undulating velvet skin,
Poetry of motion -
Yay to sex references! It just seemed to fit the bill for a first-time encounter, with the exploration and the halting advances that speak of trying something - or someone - new.
The language is so very pretty. You get the most out of every syllable and really make them work for your end, which is to convey passion and waiting and loving.
It's also seeming like it was meant to be shortly after the battle. As much as JKR would probably want Ginny to be a 'wait until she's married' girl, when the shit hits the fan, in the end, simple pleasures - or complex ones, for that matter - mean so much more. Why wait when you can't even be sure that you're going to live to finally experience it?
Anyway, enough rambling from me. Beautiful work, as usual, and I'll see you in like five seconds!
Summary: Harry finally arrives at Godric Hollow, but memories are all he finds.
This was written for the Magic in Music Challenge in Poetry Anyone, and it came SECOND. My chosen piece was Harry and Hermione by Nicholas Hooper (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince soundtrack).
I freaking fail at reviewing poetry, but I will endeavour to articulate myself in an adequate fashion. :D
The imagery and the emotion in this poem are so powerful, and it really makes me feel for Harry that he can kind of remember being there, but it's just never enough. It was the happiest time of his life, and he can't even freaking remember it. It's almost twisted how it works, and the pure feeling you've poured into it is so poignant.
Very well done, my friend. I can't remember how you placed in this (you should modify your summary to say so), but it is seriously awesometastic.
I heart you, as usua;,
All I ever wanted to do was fit in and be normal. I wanted friends, a nice boy, marriage and kids, the usual stuff. It wasn’t much to hope for.
Fighting a war can leave scars, and you can't always hide them.
This is Northumbrian of Ravenclaw writing for the Madam Pomfrey One-Shot Triathlon - Round Two: Minor Canon Characters, Prompt 1 (encounter with a mythical creature).
Hello, and good day to you, Neil!
I should be ashamed of myself, but this is actually the first story of yours that I’ve read on the archives. It’s really a shame, I must say, because you really are very good. When I’m on my next fic hunt, I shall most definitely look you up.
This is a very fascinating character portrait. You’ve taken Lavender, who we only know as a silly girl who fangirls Trelawney and likes Ron far too much for her own good, and given her a life and a body and an existence. Sure, it’s a tragic and unenviable existence, but I can’t help but admire her attitude. She knows that her moral fibre is not quite intact, and I think that’s what I like about her the most. She gives a damn, yet she doesn’t. I know it sounds contradictory, but it’s really the only way I can think to say it.
I, too, ship a tragic Seamus/Lavender, so I greatly appreciate how you built her reactions to the weddings of not only her friends, but her former boyfriend, as well. It was a bit of a twist to find out that she dumped him, not the other way around. I would be very interested to know why she did that. That is, of course, unless you’ve already got a story about that or a plot bunny waiting in the wings. If that’s the case, then I can’t wait to find out.
Your portrayal of Harry is interesting. One of the things that we noticed about Harry is that, when he’s focussed on something (or someone), he rarely thinks of anything else. As you said, he is observant, and one would have to be to qualify as Head Auror, but his focus on Ginny is very in-character. I consider myself very in tune with Harry as a character, so when I read your story, I get a very good feel for the person that I know to be him from it.
I find it interesting that you called the random Muggle bloke either ‘Dave’ or ‘name might be Dave’. It really shows Lavender’s worldliness. She understands that most words are only that, and more often than not, not much truth can be found within them. It makes her soul seem very old, though she is actually young in body. I think this is also a damned good characterisation bit on your part.
Another brilliant aspect is the almost robotic way that Lavender references her potions. She mentions carrying contraceptive potion and hangover potion like it was old hat, which adds to her sad, party girl exterior. Just the casual way she thinks of these things makes me feel bad for her and what she’s allowed herself to become.
In terms of style, I think the use of present tense, while okay, probably wasn’t necessary. I do think that first person is a must in this case, due to the intimate nature of the portrait of Lavender, but there were times that I just could not wrap my head around the present tense. By no means does it detract from the wow factor of the story (it won the CC Triathlon for a very good reason), but I’m not in love with it, either.
I found one small error in spelling. It’s a common mistake, but since you’re a ‘Claw and all, I figured you’d probably rather know than not.
It is a wonderfully strange bathroom, slate grey tiled walls, floor and ceiling. It is lit by over a dozen discrete spotlights in the ceiling.
You’ll be wanting to use ‘discreet’ here. ‘Discreet’ means ‘judicious in one's conduct or speech, esp. with regard to respecting privacy or maintaining silence about something of a delicate nature’. ‘Discrete’ means ‘apart or detached from others; separate; distinct’.
Well, anyway, back to the fun part. I really enjoyed this story and this look into a character’s inner self, and I’ve always been curious about her. I’m really glad I picked this story for my review, and I hope that I get a chance to review for you again. You are a wonderful writer, and your prose flows very well, making it great for a late night read (which this is, at least for those of us this side of the pond).
Take care and happy writing!
Author's Response: Jess Thanks for the review Lavender is a Gryffindor. She may be a bit silly and boy-obsessed (though I think that her ignoring Ron and her comments about washing facilities in DH show a more mature and mischievous side to her character) but she’s brave and determined, too. My take on Seamus/Lavender is (or will be when I finally get around to writing it) Ron/Lavender in reverse. He’s keen, she wants to end it. I’m working on a Battle of Hogwarts one-shot which will expand on this. Harry – in my storyline (all of my stories are interrelated) the events of this chapter take place on the same day as the events of First Sight, a Harry/Ginny story. Lavender is 24 years old at this point, is that young, or old? My Dad would say very young, a fourteen-year-old would disagree. I was trying to make Lavender a little unlikeable, but also sympathetic. This story spurred me to write a sequel of sorts (Moon) for the OC part of the challenge. It was written in haste, and I think that it shows so I’m currently rewriting it. I’ve now written several first person present tense stories. I find them easier to write than first person past tense, though I know that not everyone likes to read them. I should really try my hand at a first person past tense tale. Discrete/discreet – oops, I’ll change that. Thanks for the helpful and constructive review. I hope to hear what you think about some of my other stories Neil
Summary: Bill Weasley is overjoyed when Fleur tells him she's pregnant. As the eldest of a large family, he can't wait to be a dad. But as the baby grows, a small seed of fear grows too. Bill is scared and he's not sure who to turn to.
Disclaimer: I am not JK Rowling. That shouldn't come as a huge surprise.
Thank you to Hannah (coolh5000) for beta'ing this fic and to Natalie (hestiajones) for letting me play with Bill for a while.
This is Equinox Chick of Hufflepuff and this is my entry for Round Two (Minor Characters) of Madam Pomfrey's Character Clinic Triathlon.
Hello, and good afternoon, Madam Carole! I’m glad I got first dibs on reviewing and reading. It makes me feel exclusive and all.
All of that aside, I really love character driven pieces, and this one is a gem. Everyone usually turns to poor, single Charlie for the angsty post-battle characterisations, but I love that, even though Bill is happy, he has very real and very legitimate concerns about both himself and fatherhood.
Fleur, as you have characterised her, is just about perfect. Even the way you wrote her accent, I could just…hear it, and that’s fantastic. You could just tell that she was the same woman who loved Bill because of his scars from Greyback, not in spite of them. She cares about Bill so much. For example:
“I am seven months pregnant. Ze risk from ze Floo is minimal. And I do not intend staying ‘ere, when zere is a party at ze Burrow. Besides, ‘Arry is bringing leetle Teddy, and I know you want to see ‘im again.”
Her main reason for wanting to go to The Burrow is because she knows that Bill wants to see Teddy. As you mentioned in the piece, she is not as selfish as she sometimes sounds in both canon and fanon. I really like that you made us all see the Fleur that Bill fell in love with, not the one that made Molly and Ginny call her Phlegm.
When Teddy was scared by Bill, it was definitely a lip wobble moment. His favourite nephew (well, at that point, his only nephew) was afraid of him, and I don’t think there are many feelings in the world worse than that one. I can sooooo see him grumbling under his breath for a beer. I would probably have done the same thing. It was such a small detail, but it was so humanising. It adds to the overwhelmingly believable nature of this piece.
Your Molly was a complete win. She was being so very Mum the whole time, from worrying about Teddy wanting a fang earring to just knowing that her son was troubled. It seems like she was perfect to me, the way you built her character. In particular, this was excellent:
Molly snorted. “All children are scared of their parents.” She smirked at him. “Especially their mothers. How do you think I kept you lot in line? Although, it didn’t quite work with the twins ... or that sister of yours. And I never did get you to cut your-”
It’s just so seamless and perfect, the way she slips into mother mode (I believe you know what I mean by that). One thought about the kids brings a veritable avalanche of thoughts and observations about all the rest of them. I can just tell that she was doing this, in part, to put him at ease a bit. I also think that she knew what was wrong the whole time, and that she brought Teddy for the specific purpose of alleviating that ill feeling of Bill’s.
And then there’s Bill. He’s just so very real and three dimensional, from the very beginning and his desire to have a big family, up until the end, when he’s worried about scaring his own child with his scars. Now, we didn’t get to meet Bill very much in the books, but your portrayal feels so very right, especially with the concept of this story and the events that take place in it.
The part where I felt that you captured Bill the best was when he was drinking the Firewhiskey before bed.
“Merlin, Charlie, where the hell are you when I need to talk?” He rubbed at his eyes and drained the glass. His hand reached across to the bottle, but something stopped him. He couldn’t get drunk in case Fleur went into labour. Whatever his fears, he had to be there for her. Taking a deep breath, Bill walked out of the room to join his wife.
I’ve always pictured him as responsible and wanting to be there for everyone, especially for Fleur. When he really would rather drown his concerns with proverbial beer goggles, he does not, because he realises that it is his duty to be ready for Fleur when she really needs him. That reminds me so much of Bill, who transferred from his ultra-cool dream job of a curse breaker in Egypt to do a desk job, just so he could fight for the Order and protect his family. It’s very Bill, and sometimes details like these are what separate a good fic from a great one.
This story read, top to bottom, so very well. I could read it aloud, and it just rolls off the tongue. Your overall style, as always is superb in this aspect. You capture conversation and narrative so well and so realistically. I could search all day to find something odd or not good about the way you’ve written this, and I wouldn’t find anything. I know you consider this much too fluffy, but to be honest, it’s not half as fluffy as you think it is. It’s very real and poignant, and it’s a complete success of characterisation. I’m not even going to say that it’s ‘in my opinion’, because it just IS that good, whether you think so or not.
Your canon facts are, of course, impeccable. I know we chatted on AIM about the timeline of Victoire’s birth in relation to Teddy’s age, and as usual, you were right on the money. I guess I don’t really think of those two very often, as I tend to go for the younger Next-Gen characters, but you’ve made me think of Bill and Fleur in a way that I had not. Is that not the point of character pieces, to make the reader think of the protagonist in a new light?
There is one thing about which I am curious. If Fleur is seven and a half months pregnant and there is a party at the Burrow, then what was the party for? If Victoire was born on 2 May, was three days late, and the timeline was a month and a half before that, it would put the date as about March 14, give or take a few days. Are there any British only holidays in that area, or was it someone’s birthday. It’s too early for Easter (which is the Sunday after the first full moon following the Spring Equinox), too early for Teddy’s birthday, and I doubt St. Patrick’s day is on the list of celebrated holidays for the wizarding community. Perhaps you could enlighten me. My curiosity won’t shut up until I either know or just make up an answer.
Anyway, in closing, I really admire how much care you took with this piece and making it believable and powerful in that real life, this could happen type way. It’s got that quality to it that just makes me believe that it really did happen this way, and you used your normal Jedi mind trick insight into the Potterverse and made it work so wonderfully.
Adieu for now, and this was a great read. I hope you’re proud of it, because it’s really quite nice.
This is a companion piece to The Colour of Distance.
I strongly advise you to read that first.
You know, I've read this story on three previous occasions with the full intent of leaving you a proper review, but each and every time, I've been smote of my ability to properly articulate.
There is just something about your writing, Jules. Something in your words and rhythm and style and writer's soul that robs me of my ability to speak in any other language but squee. I mean seriously, I apologise in advance that you will probably never get a SPEW review from me because of this, but I can't help it. You simply stun me.
Iwill admit that I died a little inside when Hermione refused Harry's advances. I wanted to cry and rant and scream at her through my computer screen to give in, to be wrong, to be an unfaithful wretch. I suppose it's a by-product of our mutual delusion and your fantastic ability, but it was cruel of you to torture her so and, vicariously, me as well. I just... gah. Amazing. You'd think, after all my failed attempts, that I could speak properly and tell you everything that was amazing about this story, but I'm far too ridiculously in love with it to do so.
Wonderful work, lady, and have a lovely evening!
How easy it was to break them.
All it took was a smile, a few good conversations, and some daredevilry on your part to take risks and do the impossible.
You're the bestest e-bestie on the whole planet. Rose/Scorpius = heart heart heart.
I lurve you, Hestia the Bestia! That has a nice ring ot it, doesn't it?
Oh, and Carole, I don't mind birthday wishes on the review page. You can, by all means, beat me to it. Long day at work, plus a nap right away...you'd have had to wait forever. lol
Summary: Draco Malfoy stood in front of the mirror and studied his reflection closely. Flicking some invisible dust off his shoulder, Draco was satisfied. He knew he looked the part; it was just that the guests didn’t know which part he was playing.
Draco Malfoy is about to get married. The wedding has been planned for months, a union between the class of the Malfoys and the new money of his bride. His parents are delighted.
But Draco, possibly for the first time in his life, is about to defy them.
I am Equinox Chick of Hufflepuff and this is my entry in The Weddings Challenge - category Surprise Wedding - in the Great Hall Challenge.
Thank you so much to Natalie (hestiajones) for beta'ing this story in record time.
Disclaimer: I am not JK Rowling. I'd love to be, but alas, she has far more talent.
Ah, a Malfoy/Greengrass wedding... though yours is far less crude than mine. I've had this on 'Teh List of Doom' for a while now, and when I saw that you'd recommended it in the Drastoria thread in FJ, I decided to follow the link etc.
I will admit, my lips were twitching in amusement in the beginning, mostly because I already knew that Daphne was going to be the jilted bride. I just love how the 'sorry you won't get your wedding, but enjoy the party anyway' part went down. Draco was just so... almost smug as it was happening, because he was the ONLY one in the whole building (including his desired marital partner) who had any inkling that this would happen.
The wedding ceremony itself was great. I liked all the little details about a Celebrant (I must look into that, btw) and the tradition of holding the wedding at the bride's family home. It adds a lovely air of 'yeah, this sounds like how it should happen'.
I already knew about the impromptu wedding participants in Hogsmeade, so there was no surprise there, but it still managed to strike me as ultra-ridiculous from Draco's POV. Only he could have the sort of rotten luck it would take for one to have Hagrid and Mundungus as witnesses, not to mention Filch officiating. I did however love love love Hagrid, being the sort of papa bear making sure that nothing seedy was going on and that they really just wanted to be married.
All in all, charming story, and I'm glad I followed the yellow brick road and clicked the link. Ta for now, dear.
This review was brought to you by the Ravenclaw Order of the House Elves. :D
Summary: A poem written in honour of those who fought in the Battle of Hogwarts, May 2nd, 1998.
This poem won the Last Line Standing Challenge at Poetry Anyone. :) It also won a QSQ for Best Poetry. Thanks to Carole (Equinox Chick) for beta-ing this.
DISCLAIMER: Not J.K.Rowling, though I wish I was. Haha!
Congratulations, you QSQ winner, you!
I could have sworn I reviewed this story already, but as I apparently haven’t, it gives me an opportunity to extol this poems many, many virtues in a more coherent fashion, as this will be about the… sixth(?) time I’ve read it.
As I participated in the same challenge, it is more amazing to me that you were able to take that seemingly vacant slew of words and craft something that could possibly eclipse Burns’s original version of the poem. The language is just so very gorgeous and descriptive without falling over the edge of melodrama, and that is so very you.
Summary: Ginny had seen him at the bar, laughing with his mates. She didnâ€™t even know that he was capable of laughter, or having mates.
Dedicated to Draco Malfoy, since itâ€™s his birthday today (June 5th)! ^^ Happy 30th!
Ah, so the mystery of the 8 ball us revealed. She just would get a spell like that from Gred and Forge (lolz).
I really like how Draco acted. He was normal for him, but just abnormal enough to show that intoxication makes him do things that he would never normally contemplate in his dizziest daydreams. You know...like kiss Ginny. Or even want to kiss Ginny.
Very nice, and I'm glad you decided to post the full version of this drabble, because it just shows so much more than the 500 word version.
Summary: The one charm about marriage is that it makes a life of deception absolutely necessary for both parties. ~Oscar Wilde
A bitter look back at two lovers and a marriage of responsibility and duty.
This is Gmariam of Ravenclaw and I am writing for the Great Hall Wedding Challenge, Surprise Wedding Prompt.
Your lack of emails saddens me, so I decided to pop in and knock a story off my reading list.
You know, I can't even properly describe just how much Lucius's view of marriage in this story reflects my own. I know we both shall forever disagree on this, but I basically think all the same stuff that he does in the beginning.
That being said, I really do like the voice of Lucius in this. Though I'm not sure I buy him marrying his preggo mistress instead of dumping her or worse, I do feel like his cynicism was proper for who he would be after DH. I'm sure not a whole lot would feel warm and fuzzy after everything, including marriage and fatherhood. We do know that Draco revered his father, but we never really saw that reciprocal side of Lucius until they were desperately seeking out Draco during the Battle. I don't think that part is really reflected in your story as is, but in the context of it being a few years later, maybe it wouldn't have to.
Anyway, I shall spare you the rambling and get back to my ultra crappy Ravenclaw drabbles. I shall see you soon (I hope). Heart
It didn’t seem possible. He had been standing before her merely five minutes ago, but now he was gone. She stared up at the empty archway. He had mentioned voices, but there was no sound. Someone was holding her, pulling her arm, calling for her to run, but she couldn’t move. Where had he gone? Where had Sirius gone? Why weren’t they coming back?
Ginny thinks back to that fateful night in the Department of Mysteries—the night she lost Harry Potter.
I remember this from its original state. In that one, weren't they in Spain? I would be curious to know the reason behind the change, unless I'm being barmy and it was Greece all along.
I love how you use colour to add life and substance to a fic. It's like your keys are paints and your fingers are the brush, casting their vivid slashes across the page to spin a story worth knowing. One thing is for certain, and it is that you got your thousand words' worth out of this picture. The emotions in it are simply stunning.
Well done, you. :D
Summary: Once upon a time, there was a girl called Anna Samuels. She was a red-haired Muggle-born with a penchant for dancing and ducks, and according to Albus Potter, she was the most beautiful girl in the world.
This is the story that Albus wouldn't tell Rose; the story of what happened at Teddy and Victoire's wedding reception.
The Potters had always had a thing for redheads, after all.
Aw, this is lovely. :D
I love the idea that they snuck out for a stroll in the moonlight and ended up lip locking. I love Albus, so I love when Albus is in love. Anna is such a delicious character, not to mention a perfect bestie for Rose. To me, she's the culmination of everything that Albus wants to be but isn't. I think that's why they're such a wonderful pair.
I'd leave a better review, but at the moment, I'm reading on borrowed time. Awesome story, Queen O' SPEW, and I can't wait to delve into A Moment, A Love.
Summary: I suspect Potter always imagined himself dying honourably in battle or saving some poor sodâ€™s soul. He didnâ€™t. And for that I was smugly appreciative.
Ooh, I can't believe that I almost forgot to read this! I simply adore the simple, unadulterated perfection of Draco. You've seen him in so many states and so many ways, but being dead is a new one. Harry is enigmatic, but it just seems more so because of his natural inability to explain things. He always was bollocks at that. :
I simply adore everything about this story, and the ending left me with the impression that you could at any time keep it going to show some of Draco's choices and paths. It would be fascinating to see where he goes from there.
All in all, very good story, and I'm glad I stumbled upon it to read. Heart heart heart,
Summary: The world changes, but one thing stays the same – every year, a week after the Final Battle, the DA still meet to remember those who fell. For Michael Corner, this means seeing his best friend's girl, which becomes more complicated by the year.
I read this story mainly because I haven't given the minor characters' post-battle lives too much thought. I mean, I've thought about it, but not in the depth of this.
This story is amazing. Seriously, aft to stern, it is just such a heart-wrenching, thrilling ride through the eyes of someone who is more screwed up than any one person should be. There are just too many awesome things about the story to list them individually.
First off, the idea that they all keep meeting, even though most of them don't want to go, just seems fitting. I'm sure it's not unlike yearly memorial services for some war vets in our world. But the idea that they owe it to their comrades to be there would keep them going every year.
I completely get the idea of the initial hate/hurt sex between Michael and Lisa and how it became a sort of addiction. It's just incredible that you could take such a complex set of emotions and write them so well and so believably. It can't be easy to put yourself in the shoes of someone who's been hurt so badly and so deeply to portray it so well.
I do wonder, however, what happened between Anthony and Lisa in the end. Did they get married at all? It owuld be sort of screwed up if they did, what with Michael's child, but I'm assuming they did. I also wonder if Michael ever found someone, or maybe he got back with Lavender.
All in all, this story was a brilliant piece of characterisation and 'what if'. I feel like this is a legitimate scenario for the 19 years, and it makes me feel a bit closer to characters that would otherwise have never crossed my mind. Thank you for that. :)
Take care and happy writing,
Summary: The wheels that set an event in motion start turning long before the moment itself, but for Severus and Lily, it always seemed the day before what the world saw was when things really changed.
How sad! How utterly, completely, wonderfully sad! I mean....arghincoherenceisn'tmythingbutgahican'thelpit!!! How do you do that, make me feel like you know canon that isn't technically canon but feels like it and make the rest of us wonder what else you know that we don't?! Does Severus never had an OOC moment in your brain universe? I just feel so much belief in the way you write him in these various scenarios.
Okay, I suck at this, so I'm gonna shut up now. The out-of-sequence events worked really well, and the fact that you numbered them instead of having to resort to odd progressions in time and italics out the wazoo...very nice. That should alleviate the rampant spamminess that is this review. Actual discussion. Nah, not really. Fail. You win, and Severus isn't a complete bastard. I think Umbridge is my new least-favourite character.
Summary: Lavender had seen and done things she hated – they all had – and it changed her, but she needed a little help to stop running from the broken doll she had become.
Okay, I'm going to be totally honest. This story was a few things for me: it was weird, it was good, it was interesting, and it was pure fantasy. I'm not really sure what I should say. I liked the portrait of Lavender as a girl who partied and did things that she probably wished she could un-do, and I even liked the idea of her finding peace in safety with someone like Percy. I think what's throwing me off is the idea of Seamus with Cho. It just seems like you picked her to be a random hostess, whereas she probably wasn't the right choice for that. Someone who Lavender knew a bit better probably would suit your purposes more closely, such as her best friend, Parvati, Romilda Vane (who frankly seems the type), or even someone from the class list in Harry's year that was never actually met in the books.
All in all, this was a good story, and despite my reservations about Cho/Seamus as a device, I do like it. This probably wasn't the helpful crit you'd like to receive (I write, too, so I know what that means as an author), but I hope you can get something from this. I like the unique take you have for post-Hogwarts characters, so I'm looking forward to reading more in the future.
Take care and happy writing,
Summary: At the start of term feast, Severus Snape watches the first years being Sorted with a little more interest than usual, and a little more regret, as he finds one child’s presence brings back too many memories of a woman he once loved…and betrayed. Even if Severus could forgive Harry Potter for who his father was, forgiving him for who his father was not may be harder.
May I just preface by saying that this story was a brilliant look into Snape’s mind? Because it is—it truly is. Most stories in this category find themselves with an OOC Snape and an even more OOC Lily, who actually loves him. I like that anything resembling that is all a part of Severus’s imagination, and even that ended in hurt and anger—just like the first time.
There are several themes in this story that I truly appreciate in terms of Severus’s characterisation. First off, the fact that you started with his dream, but the dream went awry made me think that you were writing an AU type story. Then I find that it was Sev’s imagination. There are few things that I think Severus Snape ever regretted in his life—possibly only one thing—and that was how things happened with Lily. That remorse even permeated his fantasies, such was its power. Only regret of that magnitude would cause him to dedicate his life to protecting a child that was not even his.
I was a bit surprised when I read that Snape had killed Mary. Usually, in Sev/Lily stories, Snape is characterised as not being a true killer, as a misunderstood, emo, hottie-in-hiding that would never truly hurt anyone (which is why I don’t read this category often, lol). The fact that you retained his personal beliefs and his love for Lily at the same time, it just makes me feel like, “Yes, this is how it happened. This is really Snape.” It takes a lot for me to believe a Snape story, considering he’s not as misunderstood as most would like to believe, but you have me sold on the events of this story. Well and truly sold.
Another thing that rings true about this fic is how reality juxtaposed itself upon fantasy. Something about how the incident by the lake in 5th year overtook what should have been unfettered in his hot!sweaty dreams of Lily and him together is simply wonderful in how pitiful it is. Part of me is happy that he was miserable, because he is a miserable bloke, and Lily’s death was his fault. But the other part of me (I have compassion?! Surely not!) feels bad for him, and I kind of wanted that fantasy to be real for him. I suppose, knowing how the whole story turned out, I want Snape to be happy in a fantasy world that doesn’t include James and Lily’s death. The fact that you have the power to make me question how I feel about Snape, who I consider one of the most unlikable characters to ever touch the pages of Harry Potter, amazes me and makes me a believer in your abilities of characterisation.
The flow of your story is very good, as is the way it reads. Now, I can’t rightly tell whether it is due to your own abilities or because Fresca is such a wonderful beta (and she is), but I’ll just smile and reap the benefits as a reader. The switches between recollection and present were smooth, appropriately timed, and very well-placed. I didn’t feel, when I left a certain scenario, that I was over- or under-informed about the situation. I felt like I knew what you were conveying, what you wanted it to mean to the story, and the normal five-Ws (who, what, when, where, why).
I really don’t know how to describe your diction and word choice other than strong. There are several aspects to the way you write: you write metaphorically, simply, and smoothly. Your sentences don’t end up overlong or too short; they’re just the right length for what you’re saying. That’s so important for flow in a story, and that dimension of prose is so often overlooked. Your angst, due to your style, is not too angsty (which turns into emo), and your love scenes aren’t PWP (porn without plot) or sappy. They’re just the right balance. I hope you know how hard that is to do and how many have tried and failed that very thing in the past. I love the fact that, of all the fics I picked to read, that I chose yours, mainly for that fact.
Well, I’m off now. I really adored this story in just about every way. I cannot, for the life of me, cut through my appreciation of it to find anything I didn’t like. Kudos for that again, because normally there is something that ‘bugs’ me, but there were none of these here.
Take care and happy writing,
P.S.—I’ve already recommended your story to an avid Sev/Lily shipper I know.
Author's Response: I feel very proud of myself that I made you feel compassion for Severus! I'll take that as an achievement . :-p I think that actually is one one the hardest and yet most rewarding things about writing him when it works - making stories about him appeal to readers who dislike him. I completely agree that he's far too often written as a 'misunderstood, emo, hottie-in-hiding' (possibly the best description of badly-written!Severus I've ever encountered by the way). I really believe that he killed as a Death Eater and did some other pretty unconscionable things. I think he probably regretted them later at least to some extent, but I think he did them nonetheless. And thank you so much, Jess, for the compliments on my writing style. They put a huge grin on my face.
Summary: It’s a small town; bad news travels fast.
Spinners End was not somewhere Lily Potter had ever had any intention of returning, but then she’d always tended to put others’ needs above her own, and familiar habits are hard to shake when it comes to old friends.
Now, I like this kind of Lily/Severus, because it just feels like something that really did happen. The dynamics between Lily and Severus are just amazing. There is the right balance of bile and regret and a bit of something else. They both know that things will never go back to the way they were, but they were indelibly linked via Lily's strange need to be there and Severus's inability to send her away and actually mean it.
Seeing Severus through Lily's eyes is really different. Normally, it's him fawning over her and angsting over being a git and ruining their friendship, even if it wasn't what he wanted between them in the first place.
Now you've gone and gave me a plot bunny. About Severus sodding Snape. I hope you're happy (haha, revenge on your part, perhaps)!
We will meet again. I'm pretty much banking on it.
Summary: Ron wakes up alone in an unfamiliar flat with no recollection of the past week of his life and has to attempt to puzzle out who the woman who clearly slunk away in the night was and what occurred between them.
Wow, I love this story, too! If anyone had suggested 30 minutes ago that I would read Ron/Pansy and believe it, I probably would've openly laughed in their face. Now, it actually makes sense.
The details n this story are sensational: Pansy's celeb eccentricities, Ron's reaction to them, and the way each run-in with them made him remember more. It's just so well-crafted, and extraordinarily fascinating. I think my favourite detail of all, though was the llama milk bit. It sounds like one of those gross holistic beauty regimens that a starlet would use, not to mention something that Ron would find daft and unnecessary.
Now, I wonder whether Ron will actually meet up with Pansy. I hope he does (did I just say that?), because it would just seem like a neat ending to such an original story.
Thank you for writing this story and not making Pansy into the stupid cow that most people do. She is a bit...difficult, but that's who she is. I really like what you did with her.
Take care and happy writing,