Hi Rachel!! So sorry for how long this has taken to get to you! *hangs head in shame* life has been hectic for me!
Anyway, i'm so pleased that you asked me to read this because i don't find enough time to read your work and it's always so good that i need to make it over to your page more often!
I absolutely love the fact that you write about mental illnesses! I've seen you do it a couple times before and this is another great good look into the obsessive human mind. It makes you scared of Lavender because she does have an air of normalcy about her in this, she seems like a regular person and yet she's planning someone's death. This just makes the end result quite eerie and chilling.
I like how you portrayed a lot of her feelings - the precision of the timing, how everything seemed to magnify as she was trying to pull this off. That was a great add in because it's the exact feeling that people get when they're nervous or have adrenaline coursing through their bodies. There was also that paranoia that was underneath the surface with her, how she thought people were following her, watching her simply because of the action she was about to take. It all really helped make this seem real and made the story seem like it could have easily happened.
It was also really creative take on Lavender after the war. A lot of people focus on her recovery and her changing and although those stories are great, it's really neat to see that she hasn't changed that much since the war. She's still obsessive, still like the Lavender we are familiar with in the books. You took those traits and warped them into this.
I have some small critique to offer, though nothing too serious. You asked specifically if things made sense and there was a couple of times that it seemed to contradict itself. She mentions at the beginning a few times how planned out this was, how it took 8 months of planning etc. I liked that detail because it shows her obsession, however, then it moves on to say she didn't know where Knocktrun Alley was. If someone is planning for so long (i'm guessing it was probably even longer) then it seems strange that she wouldn't have already had that figured out in case something went wrong. Someone as obsessive as she would have obsessed about the details of her plan. Finding the alley probably would have been one of those details.
The polished wooden floors beneath her feet sounded like small explosions as she walked; each step felt like a detonation, and she almost wondered how she was still able to go on. It was remarkably simple to place one foot in front of the other. Anyone who said different was lying.
This was a little inconsistent too, simply because she's wondering how she could go on because each step felt like she was detonating a mine sort of thing. Really vivid imagery there and I loved that. However, it also went on with how easy it was to walk the next sentence and if it was easy to talk why is she wondering about how it was hard to go on to the extent that each step was like a bomb? Both sentences you have are really great and I like what they bring to the story, however, I think there might need to be a better transition for it to make more sense.
These are just nitpicky things though and do not break the story at all, i may just be overanalyzing everything. It is a great story and it's eerie how her plan just worked perfectly! Really lovely job Rachel and thank you so much for requesting because this is really a joy to read!
Author's Response: Zayne! ♥ Thank you so much for being willing to come by and read this for me -- you are just too fantastic. And no worries about the wait, obviously!
I do love my creepy stories. :D There's something about writing a creepy story, and getting into the minds of the characters in them, that I find endlessly fascinating. And I think one of the scariest things goes along with what you said about the precision in timing and all that -- I think people who are mentally ill, speaking objectively, can act quite sane much of the time. The problem is when we don't notice it until it's too late, and that's quite a dominant theme in this story.
I really appreciated your critique so much, too! I don't get enough crit like that -- I'd say 90% of what I hear is about typos, and that's always appreciated, but the sorts of inconsistencies like you pointed out that really help improve the story. :) I've made a few changes, like you suggested!
I'm so happy that you enjoyed this! I had a lot of fun writing it (ironic as that may sound), and your reviews really do always brighten my day, you know. :3 Thank you for reviewing!!