WHAT WHAT WHAT? NO. NOT POSSIBLE. WHY THEMMM? *sobs*
Your Race chapters are /never/ predictable, and that's what I love about them. It's like, one moment of "OMG YES" and then the next, I'm hyperventilating and yelling at the characters. This was probably my favorite Race so far, just because I've always thought mirrors and fun houses are sort of creepy and you just used that so well in this. With the clock and the mirrors and FRED. The way you write Fred always brings me close to tears. Why does all this emotional family stuff have to happen to him? :( AND NOW HE'S IN THE FINAL AND JUST NO. HE CAN'T. I'm actually terrified that he's going to be like Lily if he wins, because he died just a couple years younger than her, and like she had Harry, he has George but he can't lose. So itís a dilemma. I'm torn between loving you for putting all these emotions in me and wondering if I have some sort of self destructive wish to get my heart ripped out :P
But back to the mirrors! I lovelovelove the way you used Tonks's powers. I've never thought about all the different ways you could use them (honestly, I really haven't thought about using them for anything other than aesthetic purposes) but she's been so creative with them in this. I love the way she used it to get Crabbe's wand out of the mirror. SO CREATIVE HOW DO YOU COME UP WITH THIS STUFF? :O
I've been dancing around the issue of Colin through this whole thing because I think that killed me the most. Fred has always been one of my absolute favorite characters, both in the HP books and in this, but Colin has been creeping up on me from behind and in this chapter, I realized how much I love him. He's so young (that bit about never apparating Ė WOW), and yet he's done so well but WHY IS HE IN THE FINAL? Ackkk. Him and Fred. No. JustÖ I canít even put my emotions into words about that. It's like "oh, why don't we make Harry and Ron fight and make everyone pick sides". I think my favorite thing about the story (plot wise at least) is that there isn't really a /villain/. You're putting good guys up against more good guys so that we all have absolutely no idea whose going to come out on top. Like, let's face it, there aren't really any books where the bad guy wins. But when there is no bad guy, there's no formula like that which means my brain is buzzing because I have absolutely no clue.
And yet, because you're too genius to just put good guys up against good guys, there sort of is a villain. It's almost like the villain is the Devilís Duel/Clidonaís Clock itself. Part of me is still wishing that they're going to find a way to beat the race and not follow the rules, so neither of them have to die and the tradition can be stopped. In fact, the chapters between the Races would probably be excruciatingly boring if you didn't have this whole subplot going of the strangeness of the Duels and the Clock and you keep dropping all these little hints and I'm SO SO excited for it to all come together. I don't even know which plot I like reading more. You just do everything perfectly ♥
That review was a lot longer than I intended, sorry, but AHH I CAN'T GET OVER THIS RESULT. I don't know what Iíll do once I read the next chapter. At least I have something to forward to next Wednesday!
Author's Response: COLIN AND FRED. :'(
I felt so bad for poor Fred. Out of the four of them, he would have had the worst to bear from being in the portrait room. He has the most family members, after all. Oh my goodness, I'm right there with you in the self-destructive-ness for continuing this. Sometimes I wonder about myself, writing stuff that wrenches my heart.
I've mentioned this to a couple other readers - I was disappointed by the underwhelming ways Tonks used her Metamorphmagus skills in canon. She could have seriously done so much - posing as Death Eaters and infiltrating them to get information, for example. There was so much that could have been done. I was pleased to be able to use those talents in this story and make them more than just Tonks turning her nose into a pig snout.
Colin's a sneaky one. He was so annoying in the books that most people start off not liking him in this story, and now I've gotten a few people saying they like him now, which makes me thrilled beyond belief. Out of all the people in this story, I think I would like to be friends with Colin the most. He completely coasted through this tournament, getting by on sheer luck.
I love what you said about the villain thing. The Devil's Duel/Cliodna's Clock really is a villainous entity, and as far as the people go, it was very important to me that I not make it someone who is clearly good facing off against someone who is clearly bad. If you're only rooting for one person and have no qualms rooting for the other side to lose, you can't be as emotionally invested as I want you to be.
The subplots of strangeness. :3 I've been throwing in bits and pieces that will all tie together, and then you'll see. >:D
Thank you for reading and reviewing, Naida!