Wow. I think Rose just opened up something that will be very difficult to close.
This was a brilliantly-paced chapter. From the very slow, frustrating Q&A session that starts it off through Rose's break-neck tumble into Viktor's invitation at the end, you just kept accelerating the whole way. Past a certain point, I don't think I could have stopped reading if I'd wanted to. I can't believe this was almost 6,000 words.
Krum -- I feel like I have a tendency to call him Krum when I find him frustrating and Viktor when I'm liking his behavior more. I do the same thing with Severus Snape -- really has me wondering, now that I understand what he was thinking at the end of the chapter. Does he really care about the book at all? Has the book simply become a way to get close to Rose? Thinking back to when the two of them met in the bar, he's seemed very interested in her at a personal level. His fit of jealousy when he sees Rose with Al at the restaurant would seem to confirm it. By the way, I don't know whether this was intentional or not, the way you emphasized how Al's hair was lying down was clever. That made it a lot less likely that Viktor would recognize him as Harry's son.
Just to hit on a few other themes, I love the game of cat-and-mouse that the two of them keep playing whenever Rose tries to get underneath the armor and into the details of his personal life. It seems like the two of them can go back and forth at each other for hours. And based on the timeline, I guess they probably did. Also, poor Al. He's so confused. And it seems that he came along at the perfect time (perfectly bad, anyway) to help Rose hear the ticking of her biological clock. Gah, that's a horrible thing to say about someone who's only 24! But her parents, aunts and uncles were already having kids in their mid-20's, so I guess it's whatever you get used to thinking of as "normal".
You did a fantastic job with Rose's racing thoughts at the end of the chapter. There was definitely a danger there. A strong possibility that the whole thing could have come off feeling very rushed. But because of the way this chapter was paced and the frustration and anxiety that you'd put Rose through after Krum bolts from the restaurant, it all just sort of fell into place. And don't think I didn't notice what Viktor did. He took her purse, making sure that she'd have no choice but to follow. Then he keeps warning her, "don't make me angry, don't make me angry", virtually guaranteeing that somebody like Rose isn't going to back down. He gets her all wound up and then he drops the line from her own book on her. Viktor Krum has so much game!
OK, so here are the little typos that I was able to slow down enough to notice:
“It’s nearly eight," he said, taking a breif glance at his watch. - brief
“I want to know why came to see me that night at the Ministry.” - why you came to see me...
There may have been more. Honestly, I was just devouring this by the end. Great chapter!
Author's Response: First, I've gone through and fixed all the typos you've pointed out in all the chapters, so thank you. It's terrible how many there have been.
You're right to be suspicious of Krum's motives. At this point, he could really care less about the book, except that it's a good reason to get close to Rose. Al's hair! I didn't even notice that. I mean... yes, of course. I am very super clever and planned that perfectly :P
I'm so glad you liked the pair's back and forth here. I really wanted it to build the tension between them but without crossing over into just annoying. Haha, I wouldn't say Rose is in any hurry to have a baby, but I do think she imagined herself to be further along in finding "the one" by this point in her life. The fact that everyone in her life seems to have someone really does highlight how alone she is.
I was so worried about the ending here. I wanted her decision to feel impulsive but without the writing itself feeling rushed. I really didn't want a whole long internal monologue where she debates the matter, or has this long disingenuous talk with herself about how much a surprise all of this was, and how could a man like him want a girl like her. And yes, Krum really is a master at the hunt. Rose isn't really any match for him here.
Thanks so much for the review!