Hello, darling. :) I'm back to review this lovely chapter for you!
First off, before I get started with the actual reviewing, I just wanted to inquire as to why there are '@'s between every paragraph break? It wasn't like this in the first chapter, so I'm thinking maybe the format got messed up for this chapter? Honestly, the constant @s are a bit distracting, so if this was indeed intentional, I highly suggest you only use them during entire scene breaks, and not during mere paragraph breaks.
Okay, so, this chapter was great. I loved how it started out with Cormac. Again, your talent for subtle humor really shines through. You characterized Cormac very well, straying from making him just a two-dimensional character. His conflict with obeying his parents' wishes and his confusion in doing so makes it believable that he would be frustrated enough to turn to girls for support. Because although Cormac may think he just likes the ladies because he's a frisky little player, methinks he's constantly trying to pick up girls because he wants them to give him the sort of doting affection and approval he feels his parents don't give him.
I did find an error here: "...exactly 1 month ago..." The number 1 should be spelled out as 'one.' You only use the numerical version of a number if it is passed 10, and even then I think you should always spell out the number, because it looks more professional and less 'chat speak' that way.
I'm interested in finding out the revenge scheme Cormac has planned for Oliver. *runs to Ollie and quickly gives him a bag filled with the supplies and weapons he'll need to fend off Cormac's advances* Go team Ollie! *waves a flag with Oliver racing around on a broomstick animated on it; thrusts #1 orange foam finger around in the air* ^_^ hahaha, well, I guess I COULD give Cormac a chance...but I just love Ollie so much...arrcckk, now yeh've got me conflicted!
I love how everyone reacted to Oliver's news on his job interview. It was totally Weasley of them (oh yeah, I did just use 'Weasley' as an adjective, what now??). :D I've always loved the support, loyalty, and love that radiates from that family.
"Ginny and Hermione also shouted in delight, Hermione throwing in a one-armed hug."
^ That, methinks, was brilliant. And let me tell you why: you have been subtly weaving in bits of Hermione making physical contact with Oliver. In the previous chapter, she hugged him even though she doesn't know him very well. In this chapter, she not only squeals with delight at him possibly teaching at her school, but she also gives him another hug.
To me, it's showing that, even if she hasn't acknowledged this fact to herself yet, Hermione is drawn to touch Oliver. She's already feeling a connection with him, already wanting to get closer to him, both literally (with a hug) and emotionally (with the private conversation of Fred's death they have).
You make a point to tell the reader that BOTH Ginny and Hermione 'shouted in delight,' but only Hermione threw 'in a one-armed hug.' That points out that Hermione is drawing closer to Oliver than the normal reaction, as she already sees him as something special. Well done! ^_^
I really liked the private conversation Oliver and Hermione had. Especially how Hermione fights back tears, and Oliver compares this to how he stopped himself from indulging in crying the night before. It's showing how they are both strong and setting a common ground for them.
"Oliver trudged along the muddy grounds of Hogsmeade, at half past 2 the next again morning."
^ Here, you can use 2 in its numerical fashion because you are talking about the time. But still, I do think spelling out 'two' would look better. :)
"It was a surprisingly cold day for August, but otherwise, he was just taking in the wonderful sights that he had missed since his departure from Hogwarts, all those years ago."
^ I liked how you told us what the weather was like, but I think you could've expounded upon this with more description. You mention the 'wonderful sights the he had missed,' and yet you never actually tell us WHAT these sights are. Is it so cold that it's snowing? Describe how the little shops of Hogsmeade are frosted with fresh, white powder. Maybe it's not cold enough to elicit snow, but perhaps the frigid temperature is browning and drying the grass - describe how Oliver's shoes crunched against the frosted grass, the fresh scent of autumn, the grayness of the sky above, and compare this to how Hogsmeade usually is: perhaps it usually has emerald-green, vibrant grass; the smell of the shops; the sky a clear blue.
Do you see what I mean? Olfactory, auditory, sight, tactile imagery - we need all of it, us readers. How does the place smell, what are the sounds like, how does it look, what is he physically feeling. And, of course, his emotions. You don't need to bombard the reader with detail-overload, but at least SOME description would be nice. :) It can really spruce up the setting.
The Cormac-Oliver confrontation was classic!!
"Bloody hell...is that cologne called 'Stink'?" (or however the quote went)
^ hahahahah XD
And I loved how Cormac blushed after this. It shows that, despite Cormac's protests that he doesn't care with Oliver thinks, he actually does. Enough so that this insult made him embarrassed. You're showing Cormac as human, not just some character made for the sole purpose of being Ollie's rival.
I liked how the end was of Oliver vowing to himself that Cormac would not get the job. It was a nice way to tie it up, because the end of the first section (Cormac's POV) was of Cormac saying he was going to get Oliver. So now the rivalry is set.
Keep up the superb work! I'll definitely continue reading and reviewing.
P.S. Hahaha I wish I could've seen that XD Wouldn't a Weasley party be the funnest thing in the world??
Author's Response: Hello again! Thank you very much for another long review, they are so much more interesting to read and help me loads!! Yes, I realised about the '@'s between paragraphs. To be honest with you, I have no idea how they got there, but they wouldn't budge, therefore I had to leave them. I may have to think about changing that, so thanks for bringing it to my attention again! Also, I did realise a few months ago that using '2' instead of 'two' is terribly bad grammar :S That shall be fixed. Thanks for all the compliments on the characters, and I'm glad you find it funny - it's incredibly humbling to hear someone say things like that :)
PS - I know, but I bet even JK Rowling would have a hard time writing that XD