ANNON, THIS WAS SO LOVELY AND SO SAD :'( I probably should have picked a better time to read it than when I got home from the local care home...you just described all the symptoms so well, and it really felt as though I was drifting away with Mary, never quite sure of who's who any more D:
Your characterisation of all the characters was fantastic. It must have been so difficult to write 1st-person POV for someone whose mind is so confused, but you did it so beautifully! It really made me feel like a bewildered old lady, trying to remember the facts that slip by me.
And your description of the memories, how they interwove with the present to confuse it all, they were so amazing! I felt genuinely turned around, all unsure in the head, and feeling helpless. You wrote the feeling of helplessness so well, it really came across in the piece and reached out to me.
And Arthur - you showed his love for Mary so perfectly, so completely, how they would have fitted together so easily once, and now were split apart and he was trying to bring her back when he could. It was so sad to see him from Mary's POV too, especially for that last heart-wrenching line - Forget me, Arthur, I think. Please just forget me- like I have already forgotten you. It just made me tear up :(
The "ways to die" bit was really original - and really sad, because the way each way to die was almost a metaphor for something more ordinary that felt multiplied in Mary's eye. And the way she wanted to die was just heart-stabbingly sad :'(
In a weird way, I was reminded of two of Helen's characters, and it almost added an extra layer of meaning. Firstly, Mary MacDonald - this is obviously a different Mary, but since Helen's Mary never made it past 16, it made your Mary's slow descent into death somehow even more tragic because she made it that far into life but still went early, and not on her own terms. Secondly, Jenny reminded me a bit of Euan's wife Jessica in Azkaban - that acceptance of a painful mental situation, and trying to brush it off and turn it into a you-hate-me-you're-deliberately-hurting-me situation to hide the pain :( So it made her extra-real, in a way, since the clarity of Jenny in Mary's RL had been blurred by the memories.
It was just so beautiful, all of it; there was such a sadness to it all from putting yourself in her place, and seeing it all muddle together as she had to ask Arthur over and over why she was coming to St Mungo's... and the realisation that she will stay there, asking just that, for the rest of her life... it made me cry :'(
You have so much talent for description and characterisation, Annon! And this is so wonderful in its evokation (?) of tears and sadness, 100/10 (wait, you can't go to 100? damn). Please never stop writing!
Author's Response: ASDFGHJKL I LOFF YOU.
-before i continue, please note this response will be utter drivel and a lot of squeeing- :3
so much love and nutella coming your wayy
it was difficult to write a story where the main character was losing her mind, and especially as it was from her point of view, i have to say. but somehow i just managed to find the right words to get that feeling of helplessness you described and i really have no idea how i did it, and if i tried to do it again i'm pretty sure i couldn't. that's the worrying thing. whenever i write something i'm vaguely happy about, I'm always convinced i could never write it again! O.O
but enough about my silly insecurities. :)
The "ways to die" thing was completely spontaneous, and to be honest the one-shot would definitely work without it, but i just thought it was a nice way to divide up the scenes? :)
You're right about jenny being like Helen's jessica, actually! I think the part where jenny slams the door is when you can see the resemblence most clearly. hmm, interesting..
Meh, thank you thank you thank you