Enigma for short.
I'm a girl.
And I'm working on something.
For now, that's all!
For some reason, I've always seen Astoria as brunette, even before Deathly Hallows came out. (The fact that Scorpius looked a lot like Draco I attributed to some magical, undying predisposition of the Malfoy family.) I also pictured her with a somewhat calm, quiet personality, but I like how you portray her here. She's cheerful and playful, but at the same time sober and understanding, which seems just like the kind of person Draco needs to lift his spirits.
Speaking of Draco, I like how you wrote him, too -- it seems like all his emotions have been burned out of him, which I can imagine happening, as the things that he went through are hardly the kind one gets over quickly. And yet, I can see him grapple with his attraction, like when he assures himself that he didn't make himself look presentable for Gemma Farley's funeral to impress Astoria. Sometimes, the simple narration style makes him seem a bit monotone, but overall the simplicity has a good effect. It places the focus on Draco's dialogues with Astoria, and gives subtle hints of how they might influence each other in the future. I especially liked this part:
"Corner? The half-blood?"
"The Ravenclaw who saved a first year."
"Yes, I heard about him. He's a half-blood."
Astoria narrowed her eyes. "He's the Ravenclaw who was tortured for freeing a little girl, an act of chivalry that melted my sister's icy heart."
"Ah. That Michael Corner. The Ravenclaw."
She gave him a pleased smile.
It had an appropriate amount of humor and really showed their personalities. It looks like Astoria will slowly get Draco's views to change.
I haven't read many Draco/Astoria fics, but this one made me appreciate their dynamic together. Great job!
Author's Response: Thank you! I haven't read any Draco/Astoria fics either. I was one of those *cough*Draco/Ginny shippers*cough*cough* back in the day, so it took a while (years) for the Damn you, epilogue, for sinking my ship! to wear off (or transition through the stages of grief). Thank you for liking the way I wrote Draco. About Astoria's hair, it is interesting how we picture characters who haven't been described. No one's wrong and it adds colour to the Potterverse. :) Thanks again for the lovely review!
I'm fond of the Dursleys as characters, and I love the idea of Dudley marrying Cho Chang. For some reason, I never really contemplated the possibility of them ending up together, but the way you've protrayed them makes them fit together very well. They both have troubles from their pasts and have compatible temperaments. I like that Dudley has become more accepting of the wizarding world, though I was a bit sad to see that it strained his relationship with Uncle Vernon. I guess that's to be expected, though.
It was also really nice to see Cho happy. I remember she was very emotional in the Order of the Phoenix, and when I was younger it bugged me because I wanted her and Harry to end up together :P But then I started to empathize with her, and was disheartening to see her character just melt into the background once Harry stopped thinking about her. I think marrying Dudley gives her character a proper closure here.
The way you described the Burrow and the members of the Weasley family from Dudley's perspective was also very moving. Even though we know all of these characters already, Dudley doesn't, and the random things he notices, like George's missing ear, hint at the losses people suffered after the war and how they're slowly recovering and learning to carry on. (I also love how Dudley refers to Arthur as the fellytone man. xP)
But my favorite part was the ending, when Harry repeats Dudley's line: "I don't think you're a waste of space." It was really sweet.
In short, this was a pleasant read. It's short and subtle, but very powerful. I like that the cousins ended up on good terms with each other, even after what they went through in their childhood. I think both Harry and Dudley deserve that.
Author's Response: I'm glad you enjoyed it! I read on Harry Potter Wiki while researching for a fanfic that Cho married a Muggle, and I had also read that some fans thought that Cho and Dudley would make a good pairing, which I found odd since they never met. But then I got the idea to write an AU fic where they do meet. That fic was Possibility, the story before this. You can read that as well, if you like. Everyone seemed to hate the Dursleys, which is understandable, since they were neglectful to Harry, who, don't get me wrong, I love. But, in The Deathly Hallows, Dudley and Petunia start to let Harry in a little bit and be sort of nice to him. Vernon doesn't, so I didn't bother to make any changes to him, since it would be out of character. I'm also extremely happy that you liked my description of The Burrow and the Weasleys, because they are the highlight of the Harry Potter series for me. (Ron is actually my favorite character.) I'm glad I write about them well. Thanks for the review and readership!