Okay, here we go with review number two. There is a lot to cover since it's a longer chapter so I'll get right to it!
You mentioned in the request that you were concerned about the "choppiness" of the opening sections. I didn't find them choppy at all. You went for a stronger, stylized choice here and I think it worked just fine. I thought it was effective in conveying the disjointed state of Lily's mind, as well as showing some passage of time. The only thing I'd say in terms of this section is that it might be a bit of an odd choice if you don't intend to repeat it at any point in the story. Maybe you already have; clearly you've posted a lot more chapters since this one. But if it's the only really stylized section in the whole story, it would be a bit like shoving a poem in the middle of a book. If there is a poem every few chapters, great! If not, it can be odd. An exception to that might be if this was Lily's introduction into the story, but as we met her in chapter one, that wouldn't really apply here.
I thought the introduction of the Marauders was perfectly done. Fanfiction is fun in that you can cheat a little and not have to lay out every character intro just so, but what you conveyed here doesn't rely just on the fact that we already know these characters. The scene you set (holy crap! as I was typing this a spider just fell on my computer!!!) clearly says, "here are three teenage boys, hanging out; they are clearly close, two a bit closer than the third but still a solid group." That's really enough for this point in the story, even if we didn't know anything else about them. The are friends, they care; more will unfold as the story moves forward.
One character introduction that I thought needed a little more detail was Violet's. I get that she's a friend - though maybe not a very sensitive one, and who can be a bit moody :P - but she really didn't get any intro. We don't need a 500 word backstory, but a simple "one of Lily's best friends since second year," or "Lily's potions partner who cared more about boys than getting good marks" could have gone a long way. Just a bit more of a hint that she isn't just some random character. That said, Mrs. Potter's remarks about the characters "off-scene" worked just fine for me. We know these people had full lives before we the readers dropped in on them.
Moving on the James' character... I have no problem whatsoever with him being different from the way he might normally be portrayed. I'm all for creating the character you feel best fits your story and your vision. A lot of "common" portrayals aren't necessarily canon-based anyway, they just feel that way because we see them crop up so often. As long as James doesn't suddenly think Snape is the best person in the world, I don't think it will turn readers off to see a different side of him. It's actually kind of refreshing. That said, while I have no problem buying a more refined James, he may have come off a bit introspective for a teenage boy. I like that he likes his parents, and I like that he cares for Lily, but the actual mechanics of this thoughts were very mature. I can believe him feeling that way in that situation but maybe not being quite so eloquent in putting his feelings and thoughts into words.
Since I just read the first chapter yesterday and I still have it on my brain, I'd say again to watch out again for POV switches. Most of the scene at the Potter home was from James' POV, then at the end, it was suddenly Sirius'. Same with the last scene. Starts as Lily, then it's James. I don't know if you are doing it intentionally or not, but changing POV within a scene can be a bit harder to keep up with than saving the changes for between scenes. It's of course not wrong by any means, but it is something to keep in mind.
Phew! Hope I covered everything. I'll just plan to keep on reviewing from here on out, but feel free to drop any additional areas of concern you have in my thread. I may not review every chapter in this much detail but if there is something you absolutely don't want me to skip, just let me know. I can't wait to see where the plot takes us once it really gets going. I really like what you've set up so far in just these first few chapters!
Author's Response: Yay! I'm happy that the style I've used for her first section works for you. I wanted to just show how foggy everything inside her was, and that she just wanted to be asleep and unconscious. This style does come up again, but not for sometime. It's next appearance is when someone really close to the group dies, and with that it's more of a group fogginess. That won't be until near the end though, so I hope that's okay!
I CAN'T BELIEVE A SPIDER FELL ON YOUR COMPUTER! I'd be traumatized. Or shaking. Or something! Yay I'm glad you got that feeling from the introduction for those three. Especially the, two are a bit closer, because despite the fact that they are all really good friends.. no one does are is as close as Sirius and James. Imo, at least ;).
Ohh I think you're right about Violet. I wasn't concered about it here, because she is part of this throughout so I kind of just though it would be enough to pick up pieces of her, but after re-reading it I felt like she would have felt much less 'out of thin air' if I elaborated a bit on her. I edited that right after I read this review while it was on my mind, so the edited chapter is now going in the queue in a matter of minutes. Thank you for drawing my attention to it!!
Ahh! I caught those switches too! Rawr. They sneak up on my! I am much more careful not about them in the later chapters because of their length, and any switch that I don't make clear is confusing, I think by this may be the last chapter that I make that mistake again. Thank you so much for pointing it out, I cringed at the from James to Sirius switch when I reread this, haha!
I am so happy you like what I've set up so far!!! Thank you your amazing reviews, and the chapters do start getting much longer so please don't feel obligated to leave this amount of wonderful, juicy detail! I hope you really like where the plot goes, I give a scene from the Death Eaters prospective every few chapters (first one being the 5th) and only when something they're doing applies directly with my Hogwarts friends, and I'm excited to see what you think about those!
I can also say, just so you keep an eye out, any character introduced in this story has a reason to be there. As of now with my outline, I have no fillers that are there once and never show up. Some don't become important until book two when we are living in the middle of the war, though.
I will definitely drop by if I want to address a specific concern, thank you again so much for being such an amazing reviewer. I find a lot of people review on what they think the story should be like, as opposed to reviewing on what the actual story is, so it's really refreshing to find a reviewer that focus's on *the* story.
PS! I cheated and read ahead with Over The Edge on my Iphone last night, and will be reviewing what I read very soon!
Thanks again ♥