Hey there! Popping by with your requested review! :) It definitely was no trouble at all - I love reading Founders story so I was so excited to see you requesting.
First off, you asked about characterisation. Helga, as I'm sure you must know by now, is fabulous. I love how she's so... simple, but complex, if that makes sense. She looks at things so simply most of the time, but sometimes complicates things unnecessarily. She sticks to her guns completely, she doesn't back down. Definitely reminiscent of the badger ;) Rowena and Godric are so great as well - they're almost exactly how I imagined them: Rowena almost delicate and fragile, despite being so clever and beautiful, and Godric a bit like an over-grown child at times, lol.
Salazar... honestly, I think he's a great character. I like how you'd hinted at secrets in his past, at something happening to do with muggles, to give him this hatred of them, and how he has these beliefs about muggleborn students and things. I also love how you made him common but also wanting to be noble; he's like the exact opposite of Helga. He's really complex, but sometimes he can be very simple-minded in his thoughts and ideas. The one thing I would say is perhaps not to make him too emotionless. You've handled it pretty well so far - with the incident with the Boggart and his reaction to Godric's news - but maybe just keep it up? Maybe there's some form of entertainment which genuinely amuses him? Jokes which make him smile/laugh? Weather he likes/scenery he likes? After all, no one can be emotionless the whole time. But, other than that, he's wonderful! I'm so curious as to see what he's hiding from the others and what happens when he - inevitably - finds out Helga and Godric.
Your description is lovely, really really lovely, and you use it so well - only adding it in when necessary. I particularly love the way you described the Boggart and how you describe the Founders. It really paints the picture in my head and makes me associate certain things with them, you know? The only thing I would say is maybe add in a bit more description here and there of their surroundings - like the buildings, etc. Is it light/dark? Is it cold/warm? What colour are the flames of the torches? What colour dress is Helga wearing? Just little things like that will really bring it to life, I think ;)
Plot... plot is fantastic. I love it to pieces. I love how you're keeping it trimmed to the founders themselves, not including much about the students and so we get greater insight into them as people; I love the relationships you're building between all of them. And the secrets! Gah, there seem to be so many secrets in this, lol. But it's great - it adds a lovely touch of mystery to this.
So yeah, this was really, really great. Flawless grammar/spelling and flow... plot is amazing... characterisation is brilliant (Salazar kinda reminds me of Mr Darcy/Mr Rochester, you know)... feel free to re-request any time! :)
Author's Response: Hi Aph! I'm so sorry it's taken me forever to respond, but here I am! Thank you so much for this fantastic review :)
I am absolutely loving the process of writing from Helga's point of view. I've just grown to love her so much over the course of this story, and I love seeing that readers connect with her too. And you're spot on about Rowena and Godric too. I'm hoping to show a more mature side of Godric in upcoming chapters, so hopefully you enjoy that.
Salazar has challenged me every step of the way, because I'm trying not to make him a clichÃ©. But I'm glad you're enjoying him so far :) His roots as a peasant definitely have fueled his ambition for greater things in life. And Muggles do feature prominently in his past, in a way that will be revealed soon. I love the idea of bringing out little quirks about him that would add interest...thanks for the suggestion! I'll definitely keep it in mind.
I'm so glad you like the style of my writing for this era...I really think I've found my niche as a Founders writer. I am looking for ways to expand on the description though, so I really appreciate the ideas!
This my first real attempt at a chaptered story, so I was nervous about how well the plot would hold people's interest. I'm so happy you're liking it! It's been fun to get into the mystery of it all :)
Thank you so, so much! I so appreciate your feedback, and it will help me a lot as I continue writing. This was such a lovely review...it made my day!