Hello, dear! Thanks so much for helping Gryffindor take the cup! And for being such a good sport about my good-natured ribbing. ;) Here is your review.
After your prologue, I had a lot of questions about where Sera comes from, where you were planning to take her and what sort of life she leads. A lot of things started to come into focus in this chapter.
Sera's dislike of owls was a clever little touch, especially when you go into the underlying reasons why. It's one of those small details that helps to round her out by way of example.
Dorcas! I still have this very soft spot in my heart for Dorcas after finishing Pix's Snape/Dorcas (lovingly referred to as Snorcas) story, so I'm very eager to see what sort of persona you're going to create for her. She's obviously younger in your story, and happier and more carefree. She also seems to be very close to Sera and she is obviously aware of her mother's condition and very supportive. You make her out to be a good friend, which makes me happy.
Next we meet Professor Sprout, who seems nicely in character. Her motherly approach to her students combined with her fascination with all things flora felt very familiar. So Sera and Dorcas are Hufflepuffs. An interesting choice, and not a common one. I bet that 75% of the stories in the archives center on bold Gryffindors and cunning Slytherins.
And their best friends are Ravenclaws! You're eschewing all of the common cliches, at least so far, and I love it. Give me something different and interesting! So far, I'm liking Sera and Dorcas more than Catie and Helen, but I think that's just personal preference. So Catie has her sights set on Sirius Black? Oh, my. She doesn't think small, does she? I see some major heartbreak in her future, and I'm not even talking about what happens after James and Lily die. Seems like they have one of those incredibly elaborate, "foolproof" plans that only make sense when you're 16 years old and full of sugar and hormones. That should be very entertaining, to say the least...
Poor Sera. So cold of her ex to dump her just because she needs to take care of her sick mother. At the same time, I guess you could say that she dodged a bullet there. It would be terrible to realize that he's a jerk after she got even more involved with him.
The next character we meet is Aaron, who also seems like a good, solid, supportive friend. Also a bit protective of Sera, it seems. At least close enough that it would bother a jealous boyfriend...
"It mostly looked like she wanted me to sprout some sort of plant or maybe a snake from my mouth and use it to kill my potions partners." - Ah, the subtleties of non-verbal communication. ;)
And I guess I was wrong about Sera being in the Slug Club. Not interesting enough? Well I'm interested!
Oh, goodness, this plan of Catie and Helen's just seems to get more and more complex. Still Sera isn't giving up on it, which is what friends do!
Overall, this seemed like a good first chapter to me. A lot of major players were introduced and the situations you created gave us some good context to put around them. Sera is beginning to take shape as an individual, and even though her inner monologue veers in the direction of dry self-deprecation at times, you kept her out of the "Gwen Zone" that we were discussing. She's now distinct in my mind.
Your writing was lovely, as always. The characters, places and happenings were easy to follow in my mind and the dialog sounded very smooth and natural. Nice job!
Author's Response: Hello ^^ and no problem (x
Yes, this chapter started to unravel the mysteries of Sera, even though it barely scraped the surface d:
Glad you liked the owl-part! It was a great way of showing something of her character, and to start the chapter.
Ooh, I have to read that one! I've always liked Dorcas as a character and I have great plans for her in this story ^^
Yes, definitely trying to avoid most of the cliches here. Hopefully I'll succeed and still manage to keep it interesting (x
Aaron and Sera are quite close. I'll show more of their friendship more in the later chapters.
Yep, you were, sort of. She was a part of it for a short period, so you were close!
I'm glad you think that! I'll try to keep her out of 'Gwen Zone'. The two girls have some similar qualities but they are also quite different.
Thank you, dear, for such a lovely review once again! And for all the help! You're the best ♥