If you've googled "Aida" and "Luthien" you can probably guess some things about me.
Aida being an opera by Giuseppi Verdi, you could guess that I like opera, the Italian language, Egyptians, nationalism and tragedy.
Luthien being the name of an elven princess from The Lord of the Rings but from long before the actual events of The Lord of the Rings, you could guess that I like Tolkein and mythology.
Both being princesses, you could guess that I am female.
You could also check out my author banner for an idea of what I'm like.
Banner by Sainyn Swiftfoot
I still think it's easier if you just ask what you want to know.
Favorite HP characters
I love Luna. She's the most insane, ridiculous and original character in the entire series. Generally, I prefer characters who are morally ambiguous and have rich internal lives (what Henry James would call "rounded"). So I think it makes sense that my other favorite characters are Severus Snape, Sirius Black, Albus Dumbledore, Tom Riddle (Not Voldemort) and Remus Lupin.
While I love reviews, and I do read all of them, I don't normally respond to them. If you have any questions about any of my stories feel free to PM me through the boards or better still, pop by my dueling thread.
Works in Progress
Lord Voldemort and the Perils of Parenting
A crack!fic about what happened after Voldemort won the Battle of Hogwarts.
Banner by Minnabird
The Phoenix Revolution
Also known as my "magic in China" fic. A general story exploring what wizarding China might look like.
Now nominated for 2010 Quicksilver Quill for Best Original Character, for Song Feng.
Banner by Minnabird
Severus Snape learns to cast the Patronus Charm.
Banner by Clabbert2101
Your style is very interesting, but you might want to tone it down a bit. It's quite grandiose, which can be good, particularly in a prologue, which needs to sound a bit mysterious to draw readers in. More on that later.
Some of your sentences are really long and the syntax becomes quite twisted, for example, "Earth is the microcosm of the macrocosm for good and evil both have been done and always have the two been entwined in the other’s machinations."
In trying to sound very serious, it ends up sounding rather absurd.
On a smaller note, you've set up two opposing forces - good/evil, right/wrong, etc. The whole point of yin and yang is that the forces are NOT opposing, they work together. There is a spot of white within the black, and a spot of black within the white. They are not diametrically opposed, they exist in the same cycle. To conflate yin and yang with good and evil is a gross simplification of Daoist philosophy.
Additionally, within the prophecy you write that "a triumvirate will be the antithesis to the dark being" but then you list FIVE people. A triumvirate consists of three people - not five. You imply that two of of the five will die before facing the evil (I think) but it's so unclear that I can't even tell.
Also, prophecies in Harry Potter don't seem to be quite this... fuzzy, for lack of a better word. The major fuzziness in Trelawney's prophecy about Harry is who it refers to - Neville or Harry, since they are both born to parents who defied the Dark Lord three times at the end of July. But the next part - the Dark Lord will mark him - makes it quite clear that Harry is the other part of the prophecy.
The end of the prologue is also quite uninspiring. The last sentence could have been cut out completely, and the ellipsis was utterly unnecessary.
Lastly, we have absolutely no idea who this council is, just that apparently five of them decide to do these things.
In short, I am utterly uninspired to read the rest of this story despite my initial intrigue.
Tim, I know that you know how much I love this story. But I think it's time that I finally told you in a review all the things I love. Maybe it'll even convince you to try and get a chapter out this month.
First, I love Dieter. You manage to make him a believable 11 year old, while also making him an unrepentant National Socialist. It's quite brave of you to make him the hero and protagonist of the story.
I love the work that you've put into Grindelwald's Europe and the research you've done into Nazi Germany. The German details like the Volksbesen are really nice too.
I really like the interactions between Dieter and Karkaraoff. It really emphasizes the stupidity of both of their positions. The best part was that neither knew the insult the other had used! It was great.
I like the plot thickening in this chapter with Dieter doing something really dangerous to Karkaroff. I wonder if their prank war is just going to escalate all year until someone gets hurt.
I really enjoyed this poem. I like the atmosphere this poem sets up and how it expounds on its theme. In particular, some of the imagery is just beautiful, especially the lines “fiery ribbon” and “sickle of light”.
I am intrigued by the line, “No memory left”. Are the people even capable of remembering the unicorn? I’m not sure; I’ll chew on it awhile longer.
I’m not sure I’m crazy about using “dawns” or “sounds” as verbs, though I think they’re both perfectly grammatically correct. I think the second to last line might make more sense as, “It’s ignorance that hinders us from seeing” instead of “to see”. Chalk it up to a style thing.
The verse about ears was a bit confusing. I couldn’t tell at first if the ears were the unicorn’s ears or the people’s ears. I’m going to go with the unicorn’s ears because that makes more sense.
Author's Response: Thank you, Aida. I'm glad you enjoyed it. And yes, the unicorn's ears are meant. I pictured the unicorn to stand in the bushes and look around while listening for possible danger - which then comes with the people. Anyway, thanks for the review. :)
This is a really interesting take on a minor character. I really enjoyed how you've expanded Marietta's backstory.
I'm not sure I can piece together the Marietta in your story with the one we see in canon. It's not that I find fault with your characterization of her within your one-shot, that makes perfect sense, but I'm not sure how she makes the jump from this very determined to do Something, to turning in the DA. There's no hints of what might make her change her mind so completely.
I do like that you've taken a character that is canonically very minor and not particularly likable and made her likable and understandable.
Now for two little nitpicks. First, here: "Fat-ass belly, she commented mentally." As my beta keeps telling me, thoughts have to be in italics. Second, the very last line of the story reads "But there was on thing" It should be one thing. It drove me crazy because it's the very last line and it just took me right out of the story.
Some of your lines were really brilliant though. I really liked this one: "She managed it, barely, a thousand scathing remarks restrained just behind her teeth" and this one, "too slow to be one of the petit allegros her ballet mistress had insisted were vital to build stamina".
All in all, this was a very enjoyable little one-shot.
In the midst of the first wizarding war, Severus Snape and Regulus Black are playing a dangerous game.
This has no reviews and that made me sad, since this is a very interesting story.
It's an interesting idea that Snape and Regulus Black were somehow engaged in a physical relationship while they were Death Eaters. I'm not sure what to make of it. I feel like Snape was so Lily-sexual that he just couldn't have sex, even if it was just sex, with anyone else. Still, it fits the story and it was handled tastefully.
The jumps were interesting between hunting for the Muggle girl (or was she Muggleborn?) and Severus and Regulus at Snape's flat. They felt a bit odd the first time I read through. I wonder if it would make more sense if it was completely chronological.
This was a very enjoyable read. The details of the story were really good like where they hide their poisons and Lucius and Bellatrix avoiding the walls.
The story seems to be told primarily from Snape's perspective and it does seem a bit weird that Bellatrix is called Bella. It feels somewhat more fanon than canon.
Thank you for the review! To be honest, I wasn't sure this story would get any, as I have taken quite a big step away from established canon! I have been quietly shipping Severus/Regulus since OotP, so I wanted to explore that possiblity, and this was the story that emerged.
I know personally that I tend to overuse time jumps in a lot of my writing and in retrospect, I could have done more to make this story clearer/stronger/more sense-making, so I will definitely take that ito account in future fics. I suppose Bella is more fanon than canon, hmm. I may need to rethink that. Thank you for your review, it was really helpful and I am glad that you found the story interesting. :)
Bella! I thought I would check out your author page after I got my lovely banner and leave a review. I admit that poetry is not my strong suit, but wow.
I love how the fear comes through in this, particularly the lines "falling, treacherous ankle" and "ice-cold teeth, tearing my body".
I wonder if the second line might work better if it were more parallel, "lurking, hiding in the dark" instead of "luring, hidden by the dark" but it's quite good the way you have it too.
Overall, really nice, really scary poem about being hunted by a werewolf. Thanks again for the banner.
I really enjoyed this story. I was surprised by the mixture of religion and magic, even more so that JK Rowling said that the wizarding world is as religious as the Muggle one (going off your review reply). Then again, modern Europe is hardly religious.
I enjoyed the characterization of Hugh, particularly the idea that he becomes the Fat Friar.
I was a bit baffled about why the Muggle suddenly decides they have to attack the wizard monks. It seems a bit strange considering it was neither stated that they kept their magical status a secret nor that he had problems with them being wizards before.
All in all, really good interesting story.
Author's Response: Aida - I'm glad you liked the story. =) As for the Muggles...I see this as happening around the time when the whole witch hysteria thing was going on...I really should have written this better, to show the motive, but this was kind of a thrown-together oneshot. >.> The idea was: The Muggle didn't really mind when they were helping him, but once he'd gotten home safe and told other people about what happened, then that's when things started to go sour. Sorry that was so unclear. >.> I am glad you found it interesting though.
Very intriguing. Do you have any plans for expanding on these characters?
I like the mysteries in this - Why does Tania/Bella live (apparently) like a Muggle? What is Alan's back story? Why don't we get his surname? Why was her father driving so fast?
Sometimes the mystery seems a bit overwrought though. If Nick introduced Alan and Tania/Bella, why doesn't she know that he's working as Alan's driver? It's very coincidental that Peter was the driver who rammed into Nick.
As a historian, I also found the where and when of this story to be a bit odd. Clearly, it's after the war, Alan was in the concentration camps. But Where are they? How does Alan have enough money to pay for a driver and a maid? What does he do?
Personally, I'm not a fan of the Tom Riddle flashback. It doesn't make sense to me that her father's name would trigger that particular memory and Tom Riddle dating anyone, particularly a Muggleborn or half-blood doesn't make any sense at all. The abuse makes perfect sense, I just don't see why he would bother, when he could have a pure-blood girl.
I do like the characters and would love to know more about them. I also love the little details, the box that falls of out of Alan's pocket for instance.
Author's Response: Thank you for the review, Aida! I think I will begin by answering your questions. Nick doesn't work as Alan's driver; his father, Peter, does... um, did. Also, Peter wasn't the driver who rammed into Nick. Nick doesn't get rammed into -- he's somewhat unrelated to the incident. Peter was rammed by a random person. They are in England, in the summer of 1946. Alan comes from a wealthy family, so he inherited most of his money. There's a whole story behind why Tania/Bella's previous surname would spark that memory, which I sort of wrote this to be a teaser to. The story also explains your other concerns about the Tom Riddle flashback. I'm very glad you liked the characters. If all goes as planned, you shall soon learn much more about them. Thanks, Aida. ~O
In short - I love it.
To expand, particularly since you and this one-shot deserve it:
Your Draco voice is spot on. He argues with himself and agrees with both sides. He is arrogant, he is weak, he hates everyone.
Myrtle's appearance is also great. I like that everyone else just leaves when they hear her instead of telling her to get out. Typical Draco to be the only one to think of that.
I also like the surprise from the summary. I was expecting something more AU, with more out of character Draco. Instead the conflict with Harry happens exactly like it did, and exactly like it should.
SPOILER ALERT for anyone who is not aware of the true identity of the Half-Blood Prince.
~~Nominated for 2011 Quicksilver Quills, Best Humor Story~~
I love it. I absolutely love it.
Using Snape as the Grinch was a really great idea, it suits him quite well.
Snape's characterization is spot on, though you gave him a bit of a happy ending, agreeing to have brandy with McGonagall and Dumbledore.
The last lines made me sad, though in a good way.
Author's Response: I’m so happy you liked my characterization of Snape; he’s so much fun to write. Perhaps it’s that we have to be tactful in every day life and he simply ISN’T – it’s liberating. Wanted to make sure that I gave it just the right Slytherin-style compromise at the end. A total reformation would have robbed Snape of his edge and then he wouldn’t be any fun to play with any more.
I love so much about this fic.
I love the plot of it - Ginny being forced to go to Tibet since it's part of her contract, Harry deciding not to go since he has office reorganization, Ginny deciding to take Luna, Luna and the older Scamander rescuing Ginny, and Rolf's cameo at the end. It was all very well written, and well characterized. I especially loved Ginny's thought process about how no one (but Harry) must ever be allowed to know that she fell off her broom. Utterly brilliant, utterly Ginny.
I loved the title - ECCENTRIC, indeed.
I particularly loved Rolf's cameo and how he is a Harpies fan and a cryptozoologist.
All in all, absolutely great read.
Thanks for the review.
This story (and “It Takes Two”) are the result of my thinking about the names of Harry and Ginny’s children. The original intention of this was simply to explain why the kids are “five dead heroes and Luna”. Then, when Luna arrived, still single and without a boyfriend although Ginny is married and pregnant, well, I had to sneak Rolf in, didn’t I? ;-)