Hi! It's Renny from TGS for your review! It seems like our pairing is a bit unfair on your end since you have a lot more to read (probably because I was too picky with not wanting to read Next-Gen right now :P), so I'm going to look through your other stories and leave three or so more reviews so that we're more evenly balanced.
So, I love McGonagall, so this was a great one-shot for me to read. The "chapter" title was well chosen, because other than the obvious reference to the Gryffindor mascot, Minerva herself is very lion-like. She's obviously incredibly powerful and fiercely protects her own. Since she never had children of her own, I think it's very believable that she would see her students as children and be very affected when they were hurt, killed, or ended up betraying her. She's also very aloof like a lion, very rarely showing her true feelings and instead always pushing her students to do more and be better because she can see the potential in them.
The quote at the beginning was very fitting and set the tone for the piece very well. The first two paragraphs were also great and amazingly descriptive for their brief length.
"her breath stuttering as she gasped for air." --Just wondering if "shuddering" might be more appropriate? I think that's what it's called when someone's sort of hyperventilating when they're crying.
The way you describe the pain of Sirius's betrayal is powerful and sort of brings to mind how people must feel when someone they love becomes a prisoner of war and missing in action. Not the betrayal aspect, obviously, but the feeling that maybe it would be better if they were just simply killed because then you would know what had happened, and you could have a sense of closure. With Sirius in Azkaban, his remaining friends and mentors must have been in a weird sort of limbo where he was alive, but they assumed they would never be able to find out why he had "betrayed" everyone.
I know this is already completed, but you have a really great format here, and if you ever were considering continuing it a bit, maybe with four deaths from the next generation (like Colin and Fred... not sure if there were any other Gryffindor students who died), it would be really cool and sort of bring it full circle for Minerva. Not that it needs to be any longer, since it's great the length it is, but you could really go either way.
So this ended up being sort of an interesting pairing between the two of us because my story, though obviously fluffy and silly, still has an edge of seriousness with how Lupin had to deal with being the last man standing out of his group of friends following the first war. He doesn't appear much in the story just yet since I'm trying to follow the format of the novel I'm converting, but he'll have a much larger part to play later. I hope this was helpful! I enjoyed reading this and am looking forward to finding other little gems on your author page to review :D ~Renny
Author's Response: Hi Renny! First off, thank you for such a lengthy review. I love it! I'm glad to find another McGonagall lover. I wish there were more fics out there, or if there are, I need to find them! I think McGonagall is the embodiment of Gryffindor, and the line about her being a lion was actually what sparked the idea for this story (aside from the quote at the beginning). You seem to have an understanding for her character that is similar to mine which I think helped you connect with my words, I hope. :)
Hm, I'm not sure about the appropriate wording for that sentence you pointed out. I'll ask around and see what other people think. Maybe you're right. I guess I've never really thought about it in that context so I'm not sure.
You make such a good point about maybe it's better to know that they're dead rather than being left in that sort of limbo. There is no closure and no words of explanation in that case to even begin to understand how Sirius could have done what he did (and difficult at the same time knowing what we do as readers about his innocence).
I hadn't really thought about doing Hogwarts era deaths but that would be an interesting addition, for sure. Lavender was also a Gryffindor. It's something to contemplate but for now, this remains completed.
I'm interested to read more of your story now, if only to see how you tie Lupin into it all. Thank you for all your comments and for your lovely review. It was very much appreciated.