Hello there! Ac here from the improvements challenge to offer your CC review :)
Okay, first off I really like the way you had an intriguing start with this - starting with something that's interesting is really important. I did think that the whole 'I couldn't sleep - again' thing felt slightly off punctuation wise, though. The use of the dash just felt a little clumsy to me. I also felt like that first section felt really dense. There was definitely a couple of places where I thought a paragraph break would be really beneficial to making it easier for someone else to read. there were so many things all shoved into that first section - which was good, as giving the reader information is really important, but you need to ease the reader into things a little or its a tad overwhelming.
A really nitpicky thing, I always think in writing that you should write out the full number 'fifteen' rather than just having 15. That's just personal opinion, but I always think it feels more slick.
Another thing you want to watch is the structure of your sentences. Take "Pushing the door open fully I tiptoed inside and what I saw almost made me" The sentence before that starts with 'Opening the door' and having two sentences that start in a similar way makes the writing sound almost list like. Also, as they're separate clauses it should be 'Pushing the door open fully, I tiptoed inside...' I know those technical things can feel a bit dry sometimes, but they really flesh out a piece and add to it - the grammar guidelines on the forums are really good with stuff like that too.
You seemed to have several types of sentences which you favour: the ones in the example above^ where you have a present participle subordinate clause to start of with, then the main clause; sentences that start with 'I' and sentences which end with a dash and a single word (like -strange). All of those are fine, but your writing will sound more sleek and just general better if you shake it up a little. Its easier to read, too. If you read each paragraph out loud after you've read it you'll catch any repetition of things and it'll really help you become aware of how you write :)
Another point is that the formatting of your dialogue is a bit off. Again, I know this isn't strictly about your writing - but formatting really helps the story as a whole. There should be a double return before each bit of speech - it just makes everything crisp and clear and easy to read.
Moving past the technical stuff, I really think you could get into your characters head more. What you have about her emotions and her reactions is really good, but it leaves me wanting more . How's about having her grip hold of the kitchen counter for support? Or you could talk about her looking anywhere in the room but at him? Or she could be unable to look away? If you flesh out the scene more then we'll feel more connected to the scene in question. Think about everything that your body does when you're in a stressful situation and everything that you might notice - you could fixate about something else, find it difficult to talk... human being's reactions to things tend to be messy, so work with that. Explore that. Maybe give your character a particular nervous trait.
I really liked this line "He reached his hand up as if he wanted to brush away the tears but he couldn't make contact." - there was something really lovely and almost poetic about it.
There's a moment here "I just watched, wondering what you would say." where you slip into the second person. Although sometimes this work, here it's just off and doesn't really make that much sense.
Overall, this was a really interesting piece and I really liked what you were trying to do with it. I thought the dialogue was one of your strengths, actually (other than the slightly off formatting) and the premise was really unique and interesting. Your conclusion felt like an ending - with Hermione deciding to move on and carry on, even though it hurt, and that bittersweet almost but not quite lack of resolution was really good. Don't think I didn't enjoy it because of all the CC, but the aim of this challenge is improvement after all :)
So, to improve. First is to work on your sentence structures to make them more diverse and interesting. Second, to iron out some of nitty gritty mistakes - make sure you read over the whole thing really carefully before posting, check out some of the grammar guidelines and read it out loud to yourself. Finally, flesh out the scenes more. That image you've got in your head? Make me feel it. I want to be there with your characters. I want to understand them.
I'm really excited to read your second piece of writing and thanks very much for entering the challenge. Once again, this is me being as picky as possible so don't be disheartened - it was a good one-shot :)
Author's Response: Hey, first let me say thank! That has to be the longest review i have ever recieved! (and the most detailed).
I have been told about the number thing, I suppose i should watch out for that and i'm glad you liked the start.
I'll take in to account everything you said for the challenge, it'm looking ofrward to it!
I'll also probally edit this to, especially since your review is far too detailed for me not to.
I'm glad you liked it and thanks again! :)