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Review:Pixileanin says:
On the fourth day of Christmas...

There are only twelve, so I'm not behind, right?

When I first started reading this, I had no idea where you were going with it. I liked the mystery and the intrigue and the way you held back on the real issues of the story and painted us into Hermione's current life. It was like I was sitting right there, watching her, wondering what is really going on. All that time through the first scene, I was trying to make connections. You thwarted me, Dan. The shame!

Naw, it was a really good introduction. I liked how you chose Albus to be there with Hermione and help her to refine her arguments before her big meeting at the Ministry and I also think it's great that he's interested in making his own future apart from his family. (I've been playing around with that theme in my head recently too, funny that.).

When Hermione got the package and then stormed into the hearing room, I was still guessing. Who sent the message and THEN how is she going to build up a case against that monster in only an hour?? What is going on here? Are you setting her up to fail?

Making us all see the level-headed woman that she is and what she works so passionately for in the first section and then having her react so strongly to the seemingly "rehabilitated affectee" sitting in the defendant's seat was done on purpose. I know Greyback is bad. She knows Greyback is bad. But to everyone else, he's just a guy in a clean robe, about to get a second chance. The way she lost composure and Albus' reactions to it were probably about the same as all the other Geezergamot attendees. What in the world is she doing? This is no big deal, right? Obviously, it is. Even after Hermione explains to Albus who this man really is and what he's capable of, she still has to prove it. But how??

All of that was really great storytelling. You heaped a whole lotta bad onto your character with small odds that she was going to get through it in the limited time she had. Even though I think I know Hermione Granger well, I was left genuinely concerned at the end of this chapter that she might not prevail over this. And then what would Albus come away with? Oh goodness. I need chocolate.

Author's Response: This review beats calling birds, any day of the week!

So I started to write this story a long time ago. Literally, I think I was 15 chapters or so into CoB when I came up with the idea and jotted down a bunch of loosely-connected ideas. I wrote the first section with Hermione and Albus at least nine months ago, and I've just been picking at it when the mood strikes me ever since. I finally got it to a point where I got fed up with myself and decided to finish it. So here we are.

I really liked using a bit of misdirection to introduce Hermione and Albus and show what they're doing in life. Not only is it far less annoying than doing some huge back story dump, but it puts the reader slightly off balance from the start. This is certainly a story where the reader is well-advised to question everything. Nothing is precisely what it seems.

Your reaction to Greyback is the essence of what's really going on here. You know that he hasn't really changed. Hermione knows that he hasn't really changed. But it's filtered through Albus's eyes, so there's some legitimate doubt. And she has to start by convincing him, because otherwise how is she going to convince the Wizengamot?

All that said, she has a plan. You'll see it play out in the next chapter. I hope you like it! Now go get yourself some chocolate and thanks for reading and reviewing!


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