Ooh this was interesting! The metaphors and figurative descriptions really brought a new dimension to Harry's character. I felt like some of the analogies you chose made everything a lot darker and more sinister. I have so many favourite lines from this, but here are a few:
he feels like a puppet prince, shoved on a pedestal and instructed to lead
That's so true of Harry. He never felt capable of doing what was expected of him, yet he did it anyway. He never wanted to be a leader or the Chosen One, he didn't feel ready for the responsibility yet no one else was there to step up and do the job themselves.
Azkaban is a festering wound, a slain beast with ulterior motives, a pathogen in the newly-born and glorified world where the equal revel, and the less equal are ingested and vomited into this pit of blackened life-preservation.
So wonderfully dark and horrific a description! It really creates an appropriate tone and atmosphere about Azkaban, a pretty horrible place by anyone's standards.
King Potter is here to lay down a flag of peace for the filthy, festering fallen. A shining jewel of a key, glinting in glory, is produced.
I like here how you've compared the relationship to Harry and Draco to a war - it's almost as though they'd reached a stalemate with neither of them wanting to surrender their pride and once again it's Harry who has the responsibility and he is the one who lays down the flag and offers a truce. He's rescued Draco again, I notice. But Harry was really never one to sort of go "it's your turn", was he?
I love the present tense usage. It makes all your lovely descriptions very powerful and immediate. I also like the fact you have no dialogue; I feel like that would have ruined the metaphor you'd built up by bringing it back down to the normal.
All in all, a great one-shot and you created so much atmosphere and story in so few words.
Author's Response: Yay, thank you so much! I do mourn JKR's lack of Harry-metaphors, and after reading so much about Azkaban recently, I ended up slotting them together almost accidentally :P I just like constructing them, adding more to Harry, because when we think about how much of his character was left to us to infer...
Poor Harry; I did so want to show how much he didn't want to lead, because he never wanted to and until the fifth book, he never really accepted it. He always just felt like he was an accident :(
Oooh that was one of my favourite gruesome descriptions, because there are just no words for how awful it must be, but I wanted to still try. I'm glad it puts across such a nasty atmosphere, since I did want to put across the contrasts!
Hehe yes! It's just always seemed that way to me, and while Draco won't ask for help, Harry knows he can't just leave his enemy rotting - he's a better person and they both know it, and won't do anything about it.
I'm glad it worked well, it just seemed too vague and useless, especially with dialogue! It needed to feel more like a dream, and in the present, that was the effect that I (hopefully) managed :D
Thank you so much for this wonderful review! :)