Hi there Spew Buddy!!
Well, I have to say you have an amazing insight into Snape’s character, and you write him perfectly, something not many fanfiction authors can do. Saying that, Hermione was also amazingly characterised. I think one of the aspects I loved most of this story was how effortless and natural the dialogue between them sounded.
You start building tension and creating atmosphere straight from the start. Hermione’s tentative approach; the gloom and fumes in the room; that heavy moment when “he simply stared at her”. It was lovely to read, and set up the tension very well indeed.
The way Snape was trying to help Hermione fight the war while at the same time staying snide and mean was great. I love how in the same speech he can insult her and take points from Gryffindor and also want to help her in the coming battle. His only redeeming quality in this series is the fact that because of his love for Lily, he will do whatever it takes to save Harry and help him win. And so, bringing Hermione into it is perfect since she is part of the trio.
I was very curious to see the riddle. Of course, I didn’t have any of the background as to what you based this fic on, but it was intriguing nonetheless. Ah, it was an old trick. Like that riddle about “A plane crashes on the border of x and y country. Where are the survivors buried?” Of course, the survivors aren’t buried anywhere. I can completely see Hermione not thinking about wizards not having letterboxes. Snape’s evaluation of Hermione’s mind is so very true – we can see clearly in Deathly Hallows that he mind is very closed to certain concepts.
Oh wow, what a twist with Hermione revealing the secret of the HBP book! I didn’t see that coming at all. And Snape then telling Hermione she had to stop Harry from using the book. It was so in character, yet another example of Snape looking out for Harry without Harry being aware of it.
Well, what a lovely little one-shot that was. I really enjoyed reading it! It could have easily happened in canon, and that’s the biggest compliment I can give.
Your Spew Buddy
Author's Response: Oh, I'm so glad you liked it. I spent a lot of time on it, but some parts -- like Snape's dialogue -- came very easily to me. I am glad you think both Hermione and Snape are in character. Thank you once again for the wonderful review. It made me very happy!
Wow!! I'm impressed!! This fic was recommended to me by the author of And aversion to change and the resilient, and I have to say I agree, it looks really compelling. Well written, good characterization, canon (always good) and its so long! yay!
Author's Response: Thanks!
haha I loved the inner voices arguing! Brilliant
Oo, that gave me goosebumps. Lovely. This -->
Her wand made of willow - her robes, deepest black,
Her heart a possession of which I do lack.
Was my fave part. That was so sweet, almost bitter-sweet in a way. Jame's character really came through. Loved it
oh wow, that's your best by far!I loved it! Its so sweet and innocent and so very...Luna!
I liked how it flowed in a sing-song way :-D
Its cute, I think I'll favourite this now so I can find it again.
Rose was a Weasley. She never gave Scorpius Malfoy a second glance. They were sworn enemies, even though they’d barely even spoken to each other. But sometimes all it takes for love to blossom is a Potions lesson, a few snide remarks and a dropped book.
Two people. Two entirely different worlds that are suddenly intertwined.
Well, for a ... 15 year old? This story is superbly well written. Very funny, and generally an entertaining read.
I have to say, I never really thought about the Potter and Weasley invasion in Hogwarts in next-gen. 11 of them!?! That's insane.
Your now-converted-to-next-gen fan
Another cute chapter :-D
It all seems very puppy-loveish at the moment, I wonder if that will change later on?
Your Still-reading-at-midnight fa
That was cute! Nice and fluffy
Your yes-I-give-up-now-and-am-going-to-bed fan
Wow Hannah I loved that! The sequences where she was running around were very well written - my eyes were straining from trying to read too quickly! You write angst very well, and I'll forgive you for the horribly sad ending because I loved it so much. I'll never look at that line in DH the same way.
Awww, I loved that. It had so much raw emotion. This was my favourite bit:
I love it because I know that feeling...
Stunning, can't wait to read more of your work.
You know....I think I have read this fic before...after all there're very few Dramione's I havn't read. Anyways, I loved the start with the mirror! I always find Narcissa/Draco dialog a bit of hard to read to be honest, just because so many people portray their relationship so differently - not having much canon to base it on. What I thin you did really well was show how much Narcissa loves her son, something we do know from canon :-). I think this is great for a first Dramione, but your writing has matured a lot from this fic to "Oblivion." Just one super tiny little thing ->
"unfortunately succeeding to make me miserable." I would have changed to unfortunately succeeded in making me miserable. haha. Love you, love the fic, xoxoxoxox
Author's Response: Aww, thank you, Elene, darling! Yes, I agree - the Narcissa/Draco family relationship is a difficult one to get right, and I'm glad you think I did it well! Oh, God, yeah, I definitely think my writing's improved since starting this - though most of these chapters aren't Beta-ed LOL. Thanks for the review, my dear, and the advice :) xxx
It wasn’t that he didn’t love Astoria – he did.
He just wasn’t sure he could love a child.
Draco Malfoy was never one for fathering. Little kids disgusted him; babies horrified him. And yet, Astoria is pregnant. As it comes down to the final hours, he is torn between his love for his wife and his contempt for a small blonde one. Is Draco a man of his head or his heart?
Hi there Mere!
What a lovely story. I always enjoy reading birth and wedding scenes – they’re full of emotion and tension, whether good or bad. Draco is one of my favourite characters to write, and getting him right in fanfiction is really had to do. I think you did a fantastic job with his character, as well as just cooking up a really engaging scenario.
A great deal of the mood of the narrative came from your focus on descriptions, especially physical ones like describing body language. The focus on the senses, both visual and auditory really created a great deal of atmosphere and really pulled the reader into the scene. You chose to start off without a general background introduction, and let the scene speak for itself. Apart from instantly creating a bit of mystery (why exactly was Draco sitting on a chair when his wife was inside?), it created that anticipation that Draco himself was feeling, waiting and waiting. I think the emotions he was feeling came across very well through the reader seeing his fingers winding together etc. I loved the onomatopoeia of the clock ticking; I was almost holding my breath with each beat.
I just wanted to pick out this line: “Another infinite timeless, soundless space.” I was a little confused reading this. Did you mean, “Another infinite, timeless, soundless space”? I think it would sound better if you cut “infinite” out from there, because the phrasing is just a bit awkward, and infinite and timeless seem synonymous really.
The repetition of this in the “slaps” late on when Draco is pacing the waiting room was a very nice touch, and this time the pacing was much quicker, with his thoughts in turmoil. There’s a definite quickening in pace and increase in action through to the end of the piece, which kept it from becoming monotonous or dragging.
I also love the language and the description you used throughout. The “bold, merciless black numbers” stood out for me especially, since I know that feeling of being in a tense situation where even ordinary things around you tend to take on a bit of your mood. In this case the black numbers took on a threatening character. I also love the way Draco is focusing on all these minor details, you usually wouldn’t think about. This just really shows that you don’t need to describe every though running through a character’s mind for the reader to understand them. Draco is distracted and agitated and confused, and this really came across.
I loved the term “IRMW” too; was very creative and I really enjoyed reading the whole scene of the arrival with all the Healers scuttling around. The birthing scene was also very well written. From the descriptions of Astoria’s appearance, Draco’s escalating emotions, and then to cool and collected Healers, you portrayed it all very well.
I also loved that bit where you described all the lists – of names, and colours and shops. That’s probably how I would respond to something like that, and I can imagine any guy, not just Draco, feeling very far out of their comfort zone.
Looking at the characters themselves:
I have to admit that I was a little taken aback by Draco’s first thoughts. After following him through several tense moments, the words “stupid baby” didn’t quite fit right to me personally. I thought that he was in the waiting room as a nervous father, worried about his wife and how the delivery was going. Hearing suck bland negativity was a bit shocking. However, later on when he went on to explain that he “wasn’t ready for that kind of permanence. That kind of dedication,” I understood it much better. I think that you painted a very good picture of Draco caught in a characteristic display of cowardice. He had been spoiled all his life, and then hopefully had some sense knocked into him after everything they went through in the battle, but the moment that things seem to be going well in his life he goes back to that self-centred attitude. Things were good as they were, they were safe and comfortable the way they were. A baby was going to ruin it all for him. I felt like slapping him at that point and telling him to just grow up and face life head-on. (Do you ever feel that way, like you want to smack a fictional character?)
Another thing which must have been going round and round his head was of course the fact that “A child could grow up and become a copy of himself.” This was a great point, and part of me wishes that this line of thought was explored a bit more in the story. He then goes back into the pit of self pity (so life isn’t fair, get a grip...) which was again very in character. I do feel that Astoria was responsible for the majority of the change we see at the end though. The Healer’s line of “his son” might have made him realise that he was missing a piece of himself coming into the world, but I wish somehow that there was a bit more reason behind the change. It would have been nice to see Draco take that thought of being scared of his son turning into a copy of himself and turn it around, think that he had the chance to be to his child what his own father wasn’t to him. To think about the opportunity, the “miracle” as Astoria said, that has happened to him. That being said, maybe that’s the real tragedy in this story. The fact that at the end of the day, the last thought which drives Draco to say “Yes” was that it was “for her”.
His love for Astoria came through very clearly, and it broke my heart in the end when he thought that she should have been drawing his blood and not her own. Even though we didn’t see too much of her, I really enjoyed the way you characterized Astoria. I couldn’t help but think that she was much too good for Draco.
The Healer to me was interesting... I’m not sure she was needed really – she was a very rude and forward, I don’t think someone who’s in a professional career would go off on someone like that. After all, they must be used to extreme emotions when people are giving birth. I’m just assuming she was quite young and had a bit of a temper. I can’t help but feel like she was a bit of a “deux ex machina” character though – suddenly there just when Draco needed someone to tell him exactly what she told him. Would she even have time to stand there and lecture Draco when she’s supposed to be assisting the woman actually giving birth? What might have been a good idea is to have used Astoria’s mother, or even Narcissa. Have one of them rush in and find Draco just hanging around outside and give him a talking to. That would seem much more believable, and might also have a bigger impact than some random woman saying the same words. Speaking of - is there a reason none of the Malfoy or Greengrass family showed up for the baby’s birth? They could just Floo over instantly, couldn’t they?
Just a little thing I picked up one: watch your tenses. When Draco thought back to the earlier scene with Astoria in the back for the emergency vehicle, sometimes you left off a “had”, jumping a little from past to the past perfect tense.
Anyway, Thanks for a lovely story! You did a fab job with the characters and the whole concept, and the critique is just me being picky. The best thing about this story was that I felt really sucked into the scene, and I connected to Draco and could empathise with what he was feeling. Really well done on this!
Oh wow Carole! I've heard so many raving reviews about this story that I thought I should check it out. (Emma's been recommending it on a daily basis!)
I agree that your characterization of Lavender is perfect. It stuck to canon really well too. I think it's very interesting reading about what happened during the 7th year at Hogwarts, only, was Malfoy there? I thought he didn't return? -confused- Anyway, I loved Zabini, and there's a lot of chemistry between them already. I also enjoyed your portrayal of Ginny and Neville - you write canon characters very well. If I had to add a little critique, it would be that the dialog seems a little too mature sometimes. You wrote the colloquial language well, but two phrases I though sounded odd were "for the fourth time of asking," and "You must get out of here." Just my opinion.
Thanks for a great chapter, I really enjoyed that!
Author's Response: Thanks Elene, I'm pleased you enjoyed the fic. This one surprised me as to how hooked I got into writing it when initailly it was supposed to be a small one shot about Lavender written for class.
Draco - he does go back to Hogwarts. Narcissa says that b'he's home for Easter' so he must have been at school before then.
I take your point about the language (I'm no longer a teen unfortunately). However, I do see Blaise as someone who has mixed more with adults and has no close friendships, so I think his language is more 'adult/old fashioned' than say Lavender's.
Thank you for the review ~Carole~
Wow, I didn't expect something like that to happen so soon! Once again, I think your writing is nearly perfect. I still have some tiny issues with the diction in your dialog. This might just be in my head, but it seemed at times to shift rater abruptly from overly formal to very crude/slangy.
“Do you realise you’ve been staring at my brother’s Quidditch poster all this while"
I don't like the "all this while," it sounds a bit odd. Maybe "the whole time
" or a more common expression?
Then also two little ones:
“What do you think it’s to be used for?”
Rather - "What do you think they'll use it for?"
"tie in with some information Hannah gleaned"
Maybe - "It makes sense considering what Hannah overheard in detention the other day"
They just seem a little too formal for a discussion between 16/17 year olds. I'm in quite a posh boarding school, and, reading these out loud, I just couldn't imagine people my age talking like that.
“Oh, Lavender Brown, that wasn’t the only reason"
Here I wouldn't have included the "Oh, Lavender Brown," bit. Also, because you mention that he muttered it, I could imagine him just quietly muttering "that wasn’t the only reason" and then going in for the kiss.
These are really very minor things, feel free to agree/ignore them. It's very good, very well written, and I enjoyed every line!
Author's Response: Ah, you've caught the early chapters before the magnificent Emma took over the beta'ing. Yeah, the language is a bit off for teenagers although I'd leave the slangy/colloquial bits in because it's how I imagine they sound. 'Gleaned' does sound wrong to my ears now. (I should get you to proof my OF - set in a boarding school but in the 80's). Ta for reviewing. ~Carole~
Oh, just read your feedback on the first chapter. I understand what you mean about Blaise's dialog being a bit more old-fashioned. No more language related comments from now on! I loved the Lavender/ Parvati relationship, it seemed very real. Sigh. I've always been a Draco fangirl, but you're slowly converting me to Blaise. I do hope Draco features more at some point...but I guess this isn't a Dramione :-P
"Hogwarts grapevine. Snape can stop a lot, but gossip in the girls’ toilets goes on"
That made me laugh - very funny.
I like the way you include canon events into the story, and that action with Hagrid's flight was so well written. Kudos to you! You have some serious romance writing skills as well, I'm currently having butterflies and dreaming about Blaise :-P Thanks for that!
Author's Response: No no, carry on commenting on the language - it's all good crit! Umm, not a lot of Draco ... well not in a Dramione type fangirly way - he is in one or two more I think *frowns to self as can't remember* Ahh, Blaise... I dream of him too.... (don't tell Sirius or Remus that though!). Thanks again and glad you're enjoying the story (wait for the Restricted Section bit - ha ha)
Oh what an ending! I did not see that one coming. I love how strong Lavender is being, unwilling to give up on defending her mother. haha, I've forgotten her crush on Firenze, its nice to see him back. Loved that chapter, I can see Emma's influence... xxxx
Author's Response: I think girls always love horses don't they? Ha ha.
Isn't it..."whole school was" and not the "whole school were"? I mean its a single entity...
Anyways, I enjoyed that, I like the little subplots with Neville and Seamus, and I like how honest Blaise was with Lavender. Yay for Snape rescuing the class. I'm starting to look forward to the final battle now, you are going to write that, right? :-D
Author's Response: Mmm, you're probably right. Was always sounds odd to me, but it is an entity like team *ponders stupid English Language* The Battle is being written now - that's the trouble. I'm having to write canon that's actually in the book and it's haaaaaaard! Thank you for all your reviews this afternoon, it's kinda inspired me to get oin and type the rest up.
Again, Iove these endings! What will he say? When will she see Blaise again? How long till Harry shows up? Is it a boy or a girl? :-P
haha so she is actually pregnant? How will this all turn out then...Ahh now I have to wait for another chapter!
Oh, and I liked Daphne...she's cool.
Author's Response: Ah Daphne ... yeah she's cool. And yes, she is pregnant. I think Emma screamed at me at that point heh heh. Harry shows up very very soon. It is the end of April after all.
I love these endings! Ugh, from now on I'll never see Crabbe the same way...he creeps me out. Really nice plot twist with the sugar in the contraceptive potion. And I want some of that chocolate NOW!! Not much more to say really xxx
Author's Response: I loathe Crabbe so much too. Urghhh! Oh, yes ... the chocolate *sigh* - that might have to reappear.