See, I told you I wouldn't take so long this time to post another review. Nine days into the New Year and I've managed to keep my resolution! Of course, this review might be a bit shorter since you didn't have that many AoCs to cover, but I'm sure I'll still manage to push the maximum word count somehow.
Jumping right in, I really enjoyed this Lily/Petunia flashback for a number of reasons. First, I thought it worked very well with the flow of the chapter. I think having it at the start makes a huge difference, or at least at the start of a new scene. But even more than that, you made it lead seamlessly into the next section of the chapter. The content itself was also very poignant. Petunia begging Lily to fix the cup was such a realistic and telling moment between the sisters. I can't help but wonder how it might have changed their relationship if Lily HAD fixed the mug. Would it have altered or softened Petunia's view on magic at all? Maybe, maybe not, but it's fun to ponder because this fits so well into canon.
You asked about the prefect meeting, and I enjoyed that part as well. I liked the way it harkened back to that first Dumbledore's Army meeting in OotP, with Lily sort of playing the role Hermione did, and James filling the role of Harry. I particularly liked:
-- She waited a moment for the importance of that to sink in, the same way that Dumbledore had the previous evening.
I don't know why, maybe because it reminded me that they are still young, taking their cues from the adults in their life that they trust. That might be reading into it a bit much, but it stood out to me nonetheless.
You mentioned the details, and I did notice a few great little tidbits throughout the chapter. I liked the bit about Lily's friends handing her food as she entered the common room. And I really loved the line later on:
--Alice was as patient as a butterfly circling a fragile flower, waiting to land until just the right second.
The only CC I might offer in terms of the descriptions/details are to not worry so much about where everyone is positioned in the space of a room. Most of the time, I don't think it matters to the content of the scene, with the exception of when you noted that Sirius sat beside Belle in the classroom, instead of next to James. That does say something, perhaps that Sirius and Belle are growing closer, or that Sirius is miffed with James about the Auror comment. There was, however, a lot of mentions in the prefect meeting and the classroom as to where everyone was in the space, which you probably didn't need.
Oh, Moody. I really do love this character. He's fantastic and way underrepresented in fanfiction. You, my dear, captured him perfectly. I mean really. You got him to a T. I love how inappropriate he was, so unable to gauge what is proper to say in front of a bunch of teenagers, in a classroom no less. The comment about the dad using his left hand to do, well, that which I cannot repeat here, was absolutely brilliant. And then to also be so blunt and dark with lines like:
-- You remember those faces. With things going the way they're going, some of them will be the ones that are trying to kill you, and some will be a headstone in the graveyard.
You really did get everything right with him, even down to his total oblivion to the fact that it might be gross and unsettling for others to watch a man stick an eyeball back into his face. The only "negative" thing I could say (and this is technical, not a comment on how you wrote the character) is that the formatting of his speech was pretty broken up. I'd consider grouping his dialogue together a bit more, not starting a new paragraph so often, even if you do inject a small bit of action or narrative description in there.
And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Rosier. Another great way to ratchet up the intensity, reminding all of them that it isn't just about the Death Eaters "out there," but about their classmates too -- people they have known for going on seven years. And yet, you kept it in proportion. He was terrible and nasty, but also in a way you might expect from a teenager. Overall, I really liked his presence in this chapter.
Well, I think that's all I've got on this one. Another great chapter. I shall be back for number eleven quite soon, I expect!
Author's Response: Ohhh you're new years resolution revolves around reviewing? I have to admit... I'm not unhappy about this in the slightest ;)
I'm so happy that the dream felt smoothly transitioned in/out in this. That's exactly what I want to do... is get people kind of seeing there absolutely could have been a different side of Petunia. I think her and Lily always thought they'd reunite, then Lily and James died and Harry lived and Petunia blamed the infant for it ;(. Not that I'm making excuses for her, but at one point I do think there was something good there.
I always wonder if I pay too much attention to 'placing' people. Thank you for pointing that out ♥
I was so afraid to write Moody. He's seems so intimidating, then when I started writing it he sort of found his own voice. And honestly, I know I'm always supposed to say that my characters just make themselves and blah blah, but really... I still struggle with even Lily and James's voices quite often. I worry when they seem to similar, I worry about how they react to things, they really don't come all that easy. So Moody was an incredibly rare treat to sort of step in there and write himself :P.
I just went back and read through to see exactly what you were talking about with the break up of the dialogue and oh God, I wanted to cringe. I'll work on editing that as soon as possible, thank you ♥
Thank again for another amazing and helpful review. For the most part these later chapters have more 'just because' reviews and less and less requested ones, which I'm not complaining about, but it's so nice to have someone who isn't afraid to CC reading these newer ones.
Okay, I'm rambly. Only because I can't hug you. If I could just squeeze you and tell you how much I appreciate these, I wouldn't ramble so much ;)